Published: 15th November 2021
Here's why Telangana is still waiting for a green signal from the centre for a tribal university
A source said that the process itself was so time-consuming that a delay was only to be expected. Here are more details
The draft of the Detailed Project Report (DPR), which has already been vetted, for launching a tribal university in the state of Telangana is waiting for the green signal of the Union Cabinet. Until now, the DPR has been going back and forth between Ministries of Education, Finance, NITI Aayog and the University of Hyderabad (UoH), who submitted the draft years ago.
The central university has been responding to questions raised by several ministries with regards to the DPR and a source pegged the reason for the delay on the fact that the process itself is time-consuming. The source also stated that the proposal is in its last stages and is in line for the approval of the cabinet, as informed by the centre.
As per Additional Director of the Tribal Welfare Department V Sarveshwar Reddy, it was in the year 2018 itself that the Government of Telangana acquired 335 acres of land in Mulugu for the varsity and had also handed it over to the Project Officer of ITDA Eturunagaram. As much as 169 acres of the land belonged to the government and 50 acres were forest lands, whose ownership stayed with the forest department, though they were to be used as green spaces. Additionally, Rs 15 crore was spent on compensating those who had alienated 115 acres of land for the same purpose.
Former Secretary for Higher Education R Subrahmanyam and former UoH Vice-Chancellor P Appa Rao visited the site in 2018 and a youth training centre and post-matric hostels were identified for running of classes. A Rs 3 crore proposal was also prepared and sent to the University Grants Commission (UGC) for purchasing various furniture and equipment as per the requirement yet the funds haven't been released.
Initially, the plan was to commence six progammes and about 30 students will be present in each class, informed Sarweshwar Reddy. A decision regarding reservation of 30 per cent for the locals, though it is an exception to the Central Universities Act, was requested by the state to the centre and a decision on this is yet to be taken.
It was with an estimate of Rs 865 crore that the DPR for the tribal university was prepared and the prediction was that of enrollment of 2,500-3,000 students within five years of its functioning, informed an official pursuing the matter.