Bhubaneswar: Around 85 acres of 24 aided degree colleges in Odisha are under the clutches of encroachers. This was stated before the State Assembly on Wednesday by Higher Education Minister Arun Kumar Sahoo in a written reply.
Due to the encroachment issue, degree colleges are finding it difficult to set up any more classrooms or other infrastructure projects in the institutions during their expansion work.
According to official data, 15.8 acres of land of the Subarna Rekha (Degree) Mahavidyalaya, Baliapal, in Balasore district has been encroached by local people. “We have 24 acres in our college record, but around two -third of the land is under the possession of encroachers. We cannot build a good playground for our students and other amenities due to lack of land,” said a senior teacher of the college.
In the case of Prananath Autonomous College, Khurda, 10.5 acres is under illegal possession. As the cost of the land is on the rise in the market, land mafia resort to unfair means to encroach government land, said a staff of the college.
Similarly, Kanhu Charan (Degree) Mahavidyalaya, Korai, in Jajpur district and Malyagiri (Degree) Mahavidyalaya, Pallahara, in Angul district are also badly hit by the encroachment problem. As many as 10 acres of land of each college is under illegal possession of local people, reports Times of India.
Around 11.7 acres of land of the Gop (Degree) College in Puri district and around 10 acres belonging to Mahatma Gandhi (Degree) College of Education and Technology, Astaranga is encroached.