Outraged over the fact that the Naveen Patnaik government had ignored the case of Government College, Bhawanipatna while recently declaring that Rajendra College, Bolangir and Bikramdev College Jeypore will be upgraded to universities, students and local people here took to the streets and organised a protest.
Gross injustice has been done to the Government College of Bhawanipatna, they charged while demanding university status to the college here.
The locals claimed that the task force of the higher education department had recommended in favour of the Bhawanipatna college. The resenting students blocked the National Highways 26 near the College Chowk for 5 hours on Sunday.
They handed over a memorandum addressed to the chief minister to the district administration. Students warned that the agitation will be intensified if the demand is not met.
The road blocade was withdrawn after the sub collector on behalf of the district administration informing the students that their voice will be relayed to Govt.
The Alumni Association of the Autonomous Govt College, Bhawanipatna also held a meeting in the college campus demanding government to declare this college as a university as per the recommendation of higher education task force.
The association resented that the genuine demands and issues of Kalahandi are time and on ignored. In the past the demand to have a central university in Kalahandi was ignored and the long pending demand to establish a Agriculture University in Kalahandi is also in cold storage.
Dr Digambar Patra, associate professor of American University of Beirut who is also an alumni of this college has sent a memorandum to the Chief Minister on appealing for immediate up gradation of Autonomous Govt College Bhawanipatna to a University.
He stated in his memorandum that this issue has been more than four years when higher education task force recommended for upgrading Govt.
Autonomous College Bhawanipatna, Rajendra College Balangir and Bikram Dev College Jeypore to affiliated Universities. In Odisha, CuttackBhubaneswar-Khordha region has already multiple number of national and state institutions including IIT, NISER, IIIT, AIIMS, five state Govt. universities, and three private universities etc whereas Berhampur has multiple government institutions and 2 state government universities along with newly established IISER.
National Institute of Technology (NIT) at Rourkela and IIM in Sambalpur will boost number of national institutions in Sambalpur-Rourkela region. This region has 3 state Govt. Universities in Sambalpur and one state University in Rourkela. North Odisha has also two state Universities in Balasore and Baripada. In comparison, KBK region has only one University, Central University of Orissa (CUO) at Koraput.
This region needs more national institution and state government aided universities,especially to develop as a higher education corridor, he said in his memorandum.