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Vedanta hopeful of Puri varsity

Bhubaneswar: In the wake of Supreme Court (SC) expressed desire to monitor the setting up an international university by Vedanta Group in Puri to ensure that the land is not used for “commercial purposes”, chief of the company Anil Agarwal on Thursday said he was hopeful of the project.

“We will definitely go ahead with the plan to set up the university,” Agarwal told OTV.

The business tycoon told this to OTV on the sidelines of the plenary session in Make In Odisha conclave.

Asked about his reaction on the court’s remark, he stated, “Of course, it (court) should monitor this”.
“The land should not be used for commercial purpose other than education. The court can monitor setting up of the university,” a bench of Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justice D Y Chandrachud said on Monday.

The bench said it would accord final hearing in the second week of February next year on a batch of appeals and cross-appeals in the case pertaining to acquisition of over 6,000 hectares of land in the state by the Anil Agarwal Foundation, run by the promoter of the UK- based Vedanta Group.

The state government and the Foundation, which promotes the project, had appealed against the decision of the Orissa High Court which cited various reasons while holding that the land acquisition procedures for the proposed university project were “illegal”.

The counsel for activists, opposing the acquisition, had contended that the Land Acquisition Company Rules, 1963, were not properly followed by the State government. The proposed multi-disciplinary university was supposed to spread over 6,000 acres on Puri-Konark marine drive overlooking the Bay of Bengal and was supposed to admit one lakh students in 95 disciplines.

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