Rajouri: Sanctioned three and half years ago and being run from the building of Government Higher Secondary School since then, construction work of building of Government Degree College Kotranka is yet to start despite the foundation stone being laid on the project twice. Over the delay students of the college and locals held a protest on Tuesday.
The announcement for establishment and opening of the degree college at Kotranka was made by Jammu and Kashmir Government through an official order issued vide office order number 48-HE-2019 on 05/02/2019.
This order was issued by the Jammu and Kashmir Government in reference with the State Administrative Council decision taken on 14-01-2019. In this order, Jammu and Kashmir ordered establishment of forty two degree colleges including one at Kotranka in Rajouri district. Officials further said that after the order for establishment of this college, the institution was started in the building of Government Higher Secondary School Kotranka and has been run from the school building since then.
They said that work for construction of the college building was started in the year 2019 and a foundation stone was laid on the 19th of July, 2019 by then Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Aijaz Assad, and concerned Government machinery also issued a detailed notification.
However, later the Geology and Mining department raised an objection to the status of the land due to foundation issues and further processing of work was delayed.
Officials said that the foundation stone of this project was laid for the second turn in another village near Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya but the work is yet to be started there and some objection has also been raised for the piece of land. They said that since the last three and half years, Kotranka degree college is being run from the building of Government Higher Secondary School Kotranka which already is having a limited building space.
"Both degree college and higher secondary school are getting affected with it and students of higher secondary school are more affected," the official sources said.
They added that the matter regarding this delay in construction of the college building is well in the knowledge of higher authorities.
"Recently the Deputy Commissioner Rajouri aggressively followed this case and new files have been prepared for identification and finalization of a piece of land for construction of the college building," the official sources added.
They informed that this new process is going on and there are high chances that a piece of land near the identified site of Eklavya model residential school will be selected for construction of the college building.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, students enrolled in Government Degree College Kotranka as well as civil society members of the area held a protest demonstration against Jammu and Kashmir Government for inordinate delay in starting the work of college building.
The protesters assembled on Rajouri Kotranka road near police station gate blocking it for traffic. They accused the Jammu and Kashmir Government of insensitive attitude towards the issue and paying no concern towards the future of hundreds of children studying in degree college.
Additional Deputy Commissioner Kotranka, Surinder Mohan Sharma, and Tehsildar Kotranka Sumit Kumar reached the spot and pacified the protesters assuring them that the process for finalization of a new piece of land is going on and is expected to be completed shortly.
The officers however faced anger from people who said that multiple protests have been held in the recent past and assurances have been given every time but no concrete step has been taken.
Both Additional Deputy Commissioner Kotranka and Tehsildar Kotranka told Greater Kashmir that two sites selected earlier where foundation stones were laid got delisted due to technical reasons.
" New process has been started and is going on and we have also appealed to people from all sections of society to help us identify multiple pieces of land so that these identified sites can be put before high authorities and anyone feasible place gets selected," the officers said.
They further said that the administration is presently working on a piece of land which is located near the identified site for construction of Eklavya model residential school.