Fate of Second RD Women’s University campus still hangs in balance

Bhubaneswar: Though four years have passed to Rama Devi Women’s college being upgraded to university, the fate of much awaited second campus still hangs balance as the land allotted for the project by the Odisha government at Gothapatna (on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar) has elicited mixed reactions. While the university’s vice chancellor, Padmaja Mishra expressed her displeasure over the allotment, students are also divided on the issue.

Expressing safety concerns of the students, the vice chancellor today said that the varsity needs a second campus but the land for the same must be identified within the city limits.

“The university will definitely have a second campus in future but the immediate need is an extension of the present. The concerned minister has assured us to help in this regard,” said Padmaja adding that establishment of the second campus at a far off place will affect academics and will also have serious safety issues.

While some students believe that as some premier institutions are located at Gothapatna, there would not be any problem if the second campus RD Women’s University comes up there. Similarly, many are of the opinion that the new campus should be established in the Capital city itself taking into account the safety of the students.

“I welcome the decision to set up the second campus at Gothapatna as availability of a land for the same in Bhubaneswar doesn’t seem possible. IIT, IIMs like institutions are located at Gothapatna, so I think the campus should be established there,” said Madhusmita, a student of the university.

“Parents are always concerned about the safety and security of their gild child when they send them for studies outside. So, immediate allotment of a land for the campus within the vicinity of Bhubaneswar is necessary in the interest of the students and the varsity,” said another student.

Meanwhile, Higher Education minister Ananta Das said that new land for the establishment of the second campus will be allotted soon and the estates director along with the Khurda collector is looking into it. Efforts are on for the establishment of the 2nd campus.

Moreover, Revenue Minister Sashi Bhusan Behera said that the land issue will be resolved soon and appropriate land will be allotted for the campus. “It’s not that a land will be allotted at a far-off area from the city; works are on to identify a suitable land for the campus,” the minister stated.

Earlier, the State government had decided to establish the second campus of the varsity on the premises of the Utkal University in the city. However, following protests by students of the Utkal University, government was forced to withdraw the plan.

Initially the government had also selected a piece of land in Daspur but it soon dropped the plan after the location was deemed too remote.