SOA students’ stir: Officials set deadline to accept offer

Bhubaneswar: Even as the agitation of students of Institute of Technical Education and Research (ITER) under Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan (SOA) University over a fake campus recruitment row entered second day, the varsity authorities today came up with a deadline asking the agitating students to clarify their stand on the varsity offers by May 31.

The authorities have asked all striking students to confirm their decision on the offers whether to pursue M.Tech or MBA course free of cost or join as teaching assistant with a stipend of Rs 20,000.

The students have closed the main gate of the college disrupting academic activities for the second consecutive day over fake recruitment in campus placement drive even as a case was registered last night at Khandagiri police station. The university registrar had filed a complaint against the consultancy firm following which the case was registered.

The students alleged that university authorities have washed their hands off passing the buck on placement agency. “We are trying to meet the VC and other top officials again today to put-forth our demands. Yesterday, we had also met the authorities and demanded job within two months. But, our talks remained inconclusive after the VC and other officials left the meeting mid-way”, said Aparna Anand, a student.

The university authorities should ensure job or compensate us accordingly failing which we will intensify the agitation, he added.

“We want the university to give us in written that they will ensure further placement of the students or pay Rs 2 lakh each at a time” Anand demanded on behalf of the aggrieved students.

Around 50 students, who were selected by Gurgaon-based Huawei during a recruitment drive in the university, found their offer letters fake and returned without getting jobs. The company officials told them that it has not conducted any recruitment drive in the university. Not only Huawei, as many as 400 students were also given offer letters from companies like Mitsubishi, Intel and Honeywell that are allegedly fake. Meanwhile, the placement officer of the varsity has resigned on moral ground.

University authorities said not only the students, but also the college fell victim to a conspiracy.

The varsity assured the students of providing a stipend of Rs 20,000 to students to be engaged as teaching assistants and free M.Tech and MBA courses. However, the students rejected the proposals.

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