Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh University in Aligarh district on September 14, almost two years after Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announced its formation.
The university will be built on 92.27 acres of land. District officials told The Indian Express that the land was in their possession. In the first phase, the project is expected to cost Rs 101 crore, of which Rs 10 crore was released in March. An administrative block, a library, common facilities, and hostel and residential areas would be constructed in this phase. The government plans to complete it by January 2023.
Sources said Adityanath and other regional leaders would be present at next week’s event. According to a government spokesperson, Adityanath will be in Aligarh on Wednesday to review the preparations for Modi’s visit.
Named after a Jat king who donated land to the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) in 1929 and is credited with the formation of an interim government in Afghanistan in 1915, the upcoming university holds political significance for the BJP in the run-up to the crucial state elections early next year.
The move to honour the Jat icon comes at a time when members of the community have mobilised against the BJP as part of farmers’ protests against the three farm laws.
According to officials, 395 colleges in Aligarh, Etah, Hathras, and Kasganj will be affiliated to the Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh University. Apart from regular courses, the government plans to set up departments of advanced computing, biotechnology, decision sciences, renewable energy and advanced molecular genetics, and schools for multilingual studies, spiritual sciences and yoga.
Meanwhile, on September 14, Modi is also scheduled to lay the foundation stone of a defence corridor that he had announced at an investors’ summit in 2018.
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