The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry will adopt a zero-tolerance policy towards states that fail to allot land for centrally funded institutes, including the IITs and the IIITs, and will shift those to other cities if the campuses are not provided within a stipulated time, officials said Wednesday.
HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ made this announcement at a recent review meeting of the IITs, IIMs, NITs and IIITs. The Indian Institute of Technology-Goa and the National Institute of Technology-Sikkim are functioning out of temporary campuses.
IIT-Goa started functioning from July 2016 and has been operating from Goa Engineering College, Farmadi. The Goa government had sanctioned land at Cotarli-Nagvem for the institute but had to go back on its promise following agitation.
Construction of the other IITs, sanctioned by the Centre, in Jammu, Dharwad, Tirupati, Bhilai and Palakkad, which have been allotted land, is underway. The National Institute of Technology-Sikkim was founded in 2010 and has been functioning out of a temporary campus at Barfung Block, Ravangla. The Sikkim government has sanctioned land for the institute.
The HRD ministry is likely to give a month’s deadline to states for allotting land for permanent campuses, failing which it will consider the option of shifting the institute to a place where land is available.
According to an official, “The deadline by the minister will help. It has been observed that the cost estimates almost double if the sanctioned institutes fail to get land and construction does not begin.”
For instance, if the estimate for the construction of an IIT is prepared in 2007 and it gets land in 2017, that means the cost estimates are almost 10 years old and the expenditure incurred for building the campus will almost double, he said.
The move highlights that it is the state government’s responsibility to allot land for a premier institute and if they fail to do so they will have to face the consequences, the official said.