Monday, August 3, 2015


The Pioneer, Aug 3, 2015
Monday, 03 August 2015 | PNS | BHUBANESWAR | in Bhubaneswar
A ‘very quick and calm choice’ of Brahmapur as sole location for establishment of the proposed Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) of the State Government has been pooh-poohed by intellectuals of KBK districts.
The Government should have sent multiple locations for the proposed IISER like it did for the IIM in recent past. By sending one location, the State Government has once again neglected the KBK region, said Digambara Patra, Associate Professor at the Department of Chemistry,
American University of Beirut, in his letter to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. “Your Government’s sudden announcement for establishing IISER in Brahmapur came as a surprise. While your Government had sent multiple locations for the IIM keeping in view demands from various regions, Sambalpur people had to fight till the last moment to get the institute. While demand for the IISER was coming from various regions like Kalahandi, no multiple locations were ever proposed or scrutinized. This shows unfair treatment of State Government towards backward region like KBK,” Patra mentioned in the letter. 
Although people of Brahampur have every right and may deserve such an institution despite having dozens of State Government-run higher educational institutions, including two universities, it is very unfortunate that the Government has not come clear while establishing such an institution in the KBK region, lamented Patra.
Noting that most of the State and Central Government-run institutions are in four coastal districts Khordha, Puri, Cuttack and Ganjam, Patra wanted to know how the State Government, while choosing Brahmapur for the IISER, could rationally talk about inclusive and equitable growth across Odisha in higher education.
Stating that the IIM and the IISER are the contribution of the BJP-led Central Government, Patra reminded Patnaik of his party’s pre-poll promise of establishing a second Agriculture University in the State, which is hanging for more than a year now and his Government is yet to announce the same.
Unlike Brarhmapur, which was given IISER in the name of south Odisha, Bhawanipatna is well documented to be the best suitable place for Agriculture University in view of Kalahandi’s agricultural output records, Patra pointed out.
He said Kalahandi is the top most agriculture producer district among the KBK region and among the 25th largest rice producer districts in India. Besides, agriculture products in Kalahandi are very diverse unlike many other districts in the region. Bhawanipatna suits the interest for all the KBK districts and its proximity to all the existing Regional Research and Transfer Technology Stations and Substations of the OUAT in KBK and western Odisha region deserves the roposed Agriculture University.
The Kalahandi district Collector has already identified 500 acres of land for the possible university, he stated.

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