With more than Rs 300 crore of funds given by the central government to Delhi University remaining unused within the stipulated time, the university has sought permission from the Ministry of Education to spend it now.
In an Idea Exchange session with The Indian Express last month, Vice-Chancellor Yogesh Singh had said the central government had given Delhi University Rs 300 in 2018-2019 and that “DU could not spend even a single penny of it”.
Last month, the university wrote to the Ministry of Education’s Department of Higher Education to grant “special permission to utilise the unspent balance along with accrued interest to the University of Delhi” which amounts to Rs 322.26 crore.
In the letter, the university states that it has been requesting permission to spend this since November 2021, as it had been unable to spend the amount after the closure of the period of the plan, under which the funds were released.
“A large area of the university falls under the ridge area and requires multiple approvals. Major projects viz. hostel building at SDC, construction of FMS building at SDC, approved under OBC expansion grant and excellence grant respectively, could not be started due to non-clearance from statutory authorities of government, even after multiple follow-ups,” states the letter.
It states that the university has still not received clearance from statutory authorities and it is still not possible to begin the mentioned projects but it plans to work on new building projects which are “indispensable” and on renovating some “ancient/monumental” buildings for which it does not require statutory permission. It has stated that if the approval for using the unspent balance is given, these projects can be completed by March 2025. These projects include the extension of the central library, construction of an academic block in the Law Faculty Campus and constructing a university campus in east Delhi’s Surajmal Vihar. It also includes renovation work on existing buildings such as the Arts Faculty building, various hostels including the Jubilee Hall hostel and Gwyer Hall hostel, South Campus buildings, and the Central Reference Library.