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Hostels to be renamed Matoshree: Education dept move draws criticism, no hostel in Pune to be affected

According to the government resolution (GR) issued on Tuesday, the existing government hostels, which are not being referred to with specific names at present, will be referred to as Matoshree government hostels.

Written by Alifiya Khan | Pune |
March 17, 2021 7:00:59 pm
Dhanraj Mane, director of Higher Education Department, said he helped draft the GR.

The decision of the Maharashtra government to rename the boys and girls’ hostels of the Higher and Technical Education department as ‘Matoshree’ hostels has met with mixed reactions, with people taking to social media to criticise the decision taken during the pandemic. However, it appears that none of the hostels in Pune would be affected by the move.

According to the government resolution (GR) issued on Tuesday, the existing government hostels, which are not being referred to with specific names at present, will be referred to as Matoshree government hostels. All new hostels that will be built by the department will also be named Matoshree.

Dhanraj Mane, director of Higher Education Department, said he helped draft the GR. “Students who come from other cities and villages should feel at home in the hostels and they should feel the same affection which a mother gives, which is the meaning of Matoshree. Currently, Pune city does not have a single government hostel which comes under the Higher Education Department,. They are under the Social Welfare Department or are college hostels, and hence the question of renaming them does not arise. We had been sanctioned Rs 14 crore to build a girls’ hostel in 2014 but since land could not be acquired, the work didn’t start,” he said.

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Asked if any new upcoming hostels would get the name, he said none of the departments had a hostel under construction but a new girls’ hostel was coming up at Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU), which should be named Matoshree.

SPPU Vice-Chancellor Dr Nitin Karmalkar, however, said, “The existing hostels have names and suggestions are already being considered for the new one. I think the GR pertains to government hostels that are not on university campus.”

Meanwhile, the announcement has drawn sharp criticism from students and academicians, who accused the Education Department of concentrating on inconsequential things at a time when academics is at a crucial juncture due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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