Foundation stone laid for National Tribal University in Madhya Pradesh: Original idea most likely came from Orissa CM

The idea  for a central tribal university was suggested by Orissa CM, on 24th October 2005, which the HRD minister had appreciated. Following is an excerpt from the press release issued by Orissa government at that time:

… In addition to this, Shri Patnaik also requested for establishment of a Central University for the KBK Region, which is one of the most backward regions in the country. He pointed out that there was a heavy concentration of the scheduled tribe and scheduled caste population in this region, which has a literacy rate below 50%. Shri Patnaik stated that setting up a Central University in the KBK region would go a long way in encouraging higher education among tribal population. He added that the university could also set up specialized centres for tribal development related studies, as tribal development was one of the biggest challenges facing the country today. Shri. Arjun Singh appreciated the rationale of having a Central University in the KBK region and sought a formal proposal in this regard from the State Government. He assured that this would receive high priority whenever the Central Government considers setting up of new central universities.

Orissa MPs also pursued it and we had sent detail proposal on it to the planning commission and HRD ministry and the PM. The similarity between the above goals and the goals of the tribal university in MP (given below) suggests that the HRD minister Mr. Arjun Singh might have stolen the idea of a central tribal university to his home state. We wrote to the Swaminadhan committee that recommended the setting up of a tribal university and also to MHRD regarding the timeline, but no response was given.  If the idea was indeed stolen, then it is a pity as such opportunistic behavior by the HRD ministry would discourage states from suggesting ideas.

Even though Orissa has been given a central university (other than the world class university), Orissa should continue pursuing its goal for a separate tribal central university for two reasons:

  • The tribal university that Orissa wants in its KBK+ region was supposed to have multiple campuses like the one in Amar Kantak.
  • It should have a significant percentage of seats reserved for tribals.

In any case, following is the PIB from about the foundation stone laying.




19:2 IST

      A new chapter was added today in the field of higher education and research facilities for the tribal population in the country when Union Minister of Human Resource Development Shri Arjun Singh laid the foundation stone of a new Central University namely Indira Gandhi National Tribal University at Amarkantak in Anupur district, Madhya Pradesh.  The objects of the University shall include, inter-alia, promoting studies and research in tribal art, culture, tradition, language, custom, medicinal systems, forest based economic activities, including special studies in the flora and fauna, and advancements in technologies relating to natural resources of the tribal areas. It shall make special provisions for the promotion of educational, economic interests and welfare of the members belonging to the Scheduled Tribes.

Speaking on this occasion, Shri Arjun Singh said that this is an historical occasion and a moment of pride for the entire nation.  He said that this University will go a long way in providing new direction to the youth in tribal areas in meeting the challenges of the future through education and learning. This University will have live contact and coordination with other Central universities, tribal research institutions and other higher learning and research organisations and will make use of the available knowledge from every part of the country and the world to meet its solemn objectives. He said that it is necessary to have scientific temperament, aptitude for research and respect for human values and a true faith in science and knowledge.

 Shri Singh pointed out that the University will be developed into world-class institution of learning.  The jurisdiction of this University will extend to the whole country. The Minister said that University will be fully funded by the Central Government through the University Grants Commission like other Central Universities. The Minister said that it is necessary to have special attachment towards the local community and special focus on the development of the local tribal areas with full dedication and commitment so as to fully meet the objectives of this University. 

Referring to the inadequate participation of tribal community in higher education, the Minister said that it is a matter of serious concern as the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) is only 6.61 compared to the national GER of  11.6. The GER of girls from the tribal population is even lower which is 4.69. He said that low access to higher education for the tribal youth puts them at disadvantage in higher studies. The Minister said that there is high concentration of tribal population in North Eastern states and in the area comprising parts of Madhya Pradesh, Chhatisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Gujarat. While North Eastern States have at least one Central University in each State, there is no Central University especially catering to the population in the other tribal concentrated areas.

The Minister said that the University has been named after late Smt. Indira Gandhi in recognition of her deep contribution and commitment for the welfare of tribals.  He said that present University will meet this requirement and will have the right to open regional centre and campus in desired areas. The Minister said that the Regional Campuses to be opened will be named after the great personalities of the concerned area like Veer Narain Singh, Goondadhur, Birsa Munda etc. so as to pay nation’s tribute to them.

He said that universities are generally established in big metros or urban areas and there are advantages of locating the universities in such areas. But the true flavour of the tribal University will come only if it is located in the midst of tribal areas. The very purpose of the establishment of this University is to make it a prime mover for development in the tribal areas hitherto neglected. He said that the seat of the University has been chosen to be a Central point in the tribal areas stretching between Madhya Pradesh, Chhatisgarh, Jharkhand and Maharashtra.  He said that Amarkantak is a great pilgrim centre as well as source of the two important rivers of the country namely Narmada and Sone.

Shri Arjun Singh thanked the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, for ensuring adequate land and proper facilities of electricity and water for this prestigious project.  

The Minister hoped that the University will soon select all its managing authorities. He pointed out that the Act of this University has a special provision to ensure adequate representation of Scheduled Tribes in various bodies of the University. The Minister said that though in 11th Five Year Plan, the Central Government is opening several institutions in the field of higher education like IITs, NITs and Management Institutions, but this tribal University will have a pivotal role among them in higher education. The Minister called upon everybody to contribute for the development of this great institution of learning.

The messages of Her Excellency Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, President of India Dr. Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister, and Smt. Sonia Gandhi, UPA Chairperson were also read out on this occasion. Dr. S.N. Subbarao, noted Gandhian and founder of National Service Scheme presided over the programme.  Shri Vijay Shah, Minister for Forest and Scheduled Tribe Welfare, Government of Madhya Pradesh, Smt. Jamuna Devi, Leader of Opposition in Madhya Pradesh Assembly, Shri Suresh Pachauri, former Union Minister, Shri Charan Das Mahant, former Minister in Government of Madhya Pradesh, , Shri Dalpat Singh Parastay, Member of Parliament (Shadol Constituency), Shri R.P. Agrawal, Secretary, Dept. of Higher Education in the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India were among those present on this occasion.


3 comments April 20th, 2008

MP Rudra Pany asks for IIT in Orissa in the Rajya sabha on 14th March 2008

The following is from

1 comment March 18th, 2008

Agami Odisha’s plan of action (two rallies) on IIT and other issues

(The following is from

Dear Friends,

Yesterday, we at Agami Odisha decided that we will no longer remain silent on all such step-motherly attitude of Center. All who are around Bhubaneswar may join in our Rally to Raj Bhawan for our demand of IIT/ making UCE, Burla an IIEST and asking MLA for bringing out comprehensive solution for eradication of Poverty in Orissa Assembly. We must make people aware by going to the street. Let us feel responsible and perform it as a duty to our motherland Odisha.


16th March’08: Time 9AM: Place AG Square, Bhubaneswar; 1/2 an hour Rally to Raj Bhawan
19th March’08: Time 5.30PM: Place Lower PMG/ Master canteen Square: 1/2 an hour Mashal Rally
Subsequent action plan for Delhi will be decided.

Lalit Pattnaik,
Working President AGAMI ODISHA

1 comment March 13th, 2008

IIT Orissa issue raised in the asembly; CM writes to PM again

See, and

4 comments March 13th, 2008

Telegraph speculates on some of the new IIT locations


It mentions Kerala and Himachal Pradesh. In the context of,, and One may note that in the last few years an IISER and an IIST (Indian Institute of Space Sc. & Technology) are being established in Kerala and CUSAT is in line to become an IIEST (Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology).

2 comments March 2nd, 2008

Orissa BJP raises the issue of IIT

Following is an excerpt from a report in New Indian Express.

The BJP launched a scathing attack on the Congress-led UPA Government for its continued apathy towards the State.

Addressing the opening session of the two-day State executive committee meeting of the BJP here on Thursday, party president Suresh Pujari lambasted the Centre for its preferential treatment to the State so far as sanction of Central projects or Central assistance is concerned.

“The only solution to the Centre’s apathy is to build a movement against the UPA Government in the State,” Pujari said.

The BJD-BJP combination has completed 10 years and the alliance will continue to rule the State, Pujari asserted and exhorted party leaders and workers to defeat the evil design of the Congress. All the projects sanctioned by the NDA Government for the State are either shelved or relocated to other states.

The Netaji Subash Bose All India Institute of Medical Science is languishing for lack of financial support. While Orissa’s demand for an Indian Institute of Technology has been ignored, states having several national institutes are being given special treatment, he rued.

February 8th, 2008

Going beyond writing letters for an IIT: Op-ed in Samaja

February 6th, 2008

IIT and politics: Editorial in Samaja

1 comment February 6th, 2008

Why many in Orissa mistrust MHRD of India: a cry for help to the PM and Planning Commission

On Feb 2, 2008 9:43 AM, Krishna Murari <kmacharya@…> wrote:
Please see the attached message. Am afraid, the Oriya paper got it completely wrong.
-Special Secy, MHRD

======= His message is below my reply to him. ======

Dear Mr. Acharya:

It is very easy for some one in Orissa to believe that you said what is reported to have been said in Samaja.

Already, your minister Mrs. Purandareswari said something similar. See where it is reported that she read a list of institutions in Orissa that have central assistance to justify why Orissa should not have given an IIT. If she, or the staff who wrote that response, had bothered to compared this with other states, which we did (please see ) she/they would have found that other states have much more such institutes and this reasoning is yet another attempt to harm Orissa by the MHRD.

In general, people all over Orissa have developed a deep distrust of MHRD for reason listed below. From your past actions we are very apprehensive that MHRD will find or make up some reason or other to deny an IIT to Orissa or just deny without any explanation.

This is despite the fact that:

(i) Orissa is now is at the bottom of per-capita spending by MHRD in marquee institutions. In our earlier calculation, reported nation wide (see  and ) and in International Herald Tribune, Bihar and Rajasthan were below Orissa and they were rightly given an IIT. But then Orissa was skipped for the 3rd and 4th new IIT announcements.

(ii) Orissa is at the bottom of higher education enrollment at about 6.1% and needs to cover the largest gap to get to the 11th plan goal of 15%.

(iii) Orissa is the 9th largest state in area and 11th largest in population. (Note that the 8 new IITs will take the total # IITs to 15.)

(iv) Orissa is among the most backward state of the country in most parameters and has the most backward district cluster (KBK districts made up of almost half the size of Orissa) in the country.

(v) Orissa has a vast population of tribals.

(vi) Orissa is trying its best to industrialize and is among the lead in recent ASSOCHAM  studies regarding investment destinations.

(vii) The people of Orissa, its MPs, and its CM have been trying very hard for several years now to convince MHRD and the PM about an IIT in Orissa, but without any results. Please see the media articles stored at , , ,  to know the involvement of every one in Orissa on this. This is very very different from any other state asking for an IIT. Nowhere, the intensity and passion comes even close.

Now let me give you the reasons why people in Orissa have a deep mistrust towards MHRD and believe that MHRD is actively working to keep Orissa down and harm it.

A. MHRD took away a previously announced (by the President) NIS from Orissa. The MHRD fought tooth and nail with Orissa in the political arena (parliament), in courts (Cuttack high court and supreme court), and other places on the NIS issue. And it never gave Orissa the NIS it had taken away which are now called IISERs. MHRD gave them all to its favored states (Pune, Kolkata, Punjab, Bhopal and Kerala.) See and for the press articles and chronology of this.

Thank God, India has a prime minister who has some shame, who sanctioned NISER from his ministry, the DAE. Despite that NISER’s approval in the cabinet was delayed and even now other hurdles have been put that continues to prevent NISER from recruiting regular faculty.

B. The following is a partial list of higher education institutions funded by MHRD  that MHRD has announced since this government came. Sir: Can you please find Orissa’s name in it?

1. IISER Kolkata, West Bengal (1)
2. IISER Pune, Maharashtra (1)
3. IISER Mohali, Punjab (1)
4. IISER in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh (1)
5. IISER in Thiruvanthapuram, Kerala (1)
6. IIT in Andhra Pradesh (1)
7. IIT in Rajasthan (1)
8. IIT in Bihar (1)
9. IIM at Shillong, Meghalaya (1)
10. SPA in Vijaywada, Andhra Pradesh (2)
11. SPA in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh (2)
12. Upgradation of Bengal Engineering and Sc U to an IIT clone (IIEST), West Bengal (2)
13. Upgradation of Andhra Univ Engineering College to IIT clone (IIEST), Andhra Pradesh (3)
14. Upgradation of Osmania Univ Engg College to IIT clone (IIEST), Andhra Pradesh (4)
15. Upgradation of IT BHU to IIT clone (IIEST), Uttar Pradesh (1)
16. Upgradation of Cochin Univ of Sc and Tech to IIT clone (IIEST), Kerala (2)
17. IIIT Kanchipuram, Tamilnadu (1)
18. Allahbad University made to a Central University, Uttar Pradesh (2)
19. Manipur University made to a Central University, Manipur (1)
20. Arunachal Pradesh university made to a Central University,Arunachal Pradesh (1)
21. Tripura university made to a Central University, Tripura (1)
22. New Central University in Sikkim, Sikkim (1)
23. CIEFL Hyderabad made to a central university, Andhra Pradesh (5)
24. Indira Gandhi Nationan Tribal University, Madhya Pradesh (3)
25. IIT in Himachal Pradesh (1)

This MHRD has announced TWENTY FIVE+ national institutions so far and Orissa does not even figure once in that list and I am sure you can figure out why people from Orissa completely distrust MHRD and its intentions.

C: Please read the following excerpt from the Orissa government press release on Oct 24 2005 where CM of Orissa discussed about a tribal university in KBK region of Orissa.

… In addition to this, Shri Patnaik also requested for establishment of a Central University for the KBK Region, which is one of the most backward regions in the country. He pointed out that there was a heavy concentration of the scheduled tribe and scheduled caste population in this region, which has a literacy rate below 50%. Shri Patnaik stated that setting up a Central University in the KBK region would go a long way in encouraging higher education among tribal population. He added that the university could also set up specialized centres for tribal development related studies, as tribal development was one of the biggest challenges facing the country today. Shri. Arjun Singh appreciated the rationale of having a Central University in the KBK region and sought a formal proposal in this regard from the State Government. He assured that this would receive high priority whenever the Central Government considers setting up of new central universities

Please compare it with the following about the proposed Indira Gandhi National Tribal University that came out in Hindu on 19th November 2006.  ( and it seems that the idea proposed by our CM was stolen by MHRD to establish a similar university with HQ in MP and Orissa was conveniently ignored and thus harmed.

    • … The Indira Gandhi National Tribal University will encourage studies on tribal art, culture and traditions, forests and natural resources. Tribal students will be given priority in admission. … The D. Swaminadhan Committee, set up by the University Grants Commission, recommended the setting up of a varsity exclusively for promoting tribal culture and providing tribals access to higher education.


Thus MHRD is the ministry which not only has not given any national institute to Orissa but seems to have taken away two of them from Orissa: an NIS/IISER and the tribal central university which Orissa seem to have proposed first. Please look up a thesaurus to find out the adjectives used for some one who steals from the poorest of the poor. MHRD, because of its actions towards Orissa, deserves that adjective.


Since we do not have any trust in MHRD, we have to take things directly to the PM, Mrs. Gandhi, the planning commission and the people of India at large. There is no other option left for the weakest and the poorest and the most backward when the MHRD that is supposed to help it steals from it and tries its best to harm it and makes up ridiculous and false reasons for it.

We sincerely hope that either the MHRD will come to its senses or the PM and the planning commission will bring it into its senses so that MHRD grants at least

(i) an IIT to Orissa so that Orissa has one of the 15 IITs in the country (b) one of the 14 proposed world class central universities (c) one of the proposed 10 NITs (d) a tribal central university in KBK (out of the remaining 16 new central universities) for all of the reasons mentioned earlier in the mail.

[Again, Orissa is the 9th largest state in area, 11th largest state in  population, has been historically funded the least by MHRD, has to bridge the largest gap from 6.1% to the 11th plan target of 15%, and among the states that is trying its hardest – by rapid industrialization- to get out of the bottom of everything.]

Anything less, we will know that MHRD is up to its tricks again, and despite the fact that the PM has increased the number of institutions to so many (8 new IITs taking the total to 15; 14 world class central universities; and 10 new NITs) that there is really no reason, except spite and intent to harm, to not give Orissa the above mentioned institutions.

sincerely and with best regards,
Chitta Baral

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Krishna Murari <kmacharya@…>
To: RAJESH MOHAPATRA <mahapatrark@…>
Date: Sat, 02 Feb 2008 15:43:18 +0500
Subject: Re: Please don’t force Orissa to remain backward: Reaction to "No IIT for Orissa because it has NISER" – MHRD special secretary as reported in The Samaja

The statement apparently attributed to the Special Secretary, MHRD, in some sections of the Oriya press is completely wrong. No such statement -that because of the NISER, IIT would not be considered for an IIT – was ever made. What was actually said was that Orissa’s demand for an IISER was met by establishing a NISER there. 
– Special Secy, MHRD

2 comments February 3rd, 2008

CM Naveen Patnaik reacts angrily to MHRD special secretary’s statement; writes to PM again

Following is an excerpt  from a report in Pioneer. (Also reported in Statesman, Sambada, New Indian Express, Dharitr1, Dharitri2, Pragativadi)

… Coming down heavily on the Centre, Patnaik said, "I am surprised to see that decisions are being taken on a political consideration. I have repeatedly taken up the matter of establishing of an IIT in Orissa with the Prime Minister and the Union Minister for Human Resources Development (HRD). I have told them that Orissa’s case is a genuine one."

Raising his voice against the Centre, Patnaik said a question should be asked why the Centre shifted the National Institute of Science (NIS), which was sanctioned by the then NDA Government from Bhubaneswar to Kolkata.

Reacting sharply over the remarks of the Union Secretary of HRD that Orissa does not deserve an IIT as it has already got the NISER (National Institute of Science and Educational Research), Patnaik said how could the NIS be shifted to Kolkata when IIT, Kharagpur is already there.

"How West Bengal has taken two such premier institutes? All these decisions have been taken on a political consideration," Patnaik said.

In his letter Patnaik mentioned that as Orissa was witnessing a rapid growth in industrialisation, these technical institutes are required for creating the requisite manpower. 

February 2nd, 2008

Reaction to “No IIT for Orissa because of NISER” comment by an MHRD official

A news report in Samaja (30th January 2008, Page 7) mentions that Special Secretary in the higher education department Mr. Acharya said that, "Orissa and many other states have vigorously demanded IITs; But since a IIT quality higher education institution – NISER – has been established in Orissa, it is not possible to establish an IIT in that state."  He continues on to say that, " NISER and IIT have the same admission process that happens at the same time. Since NISER will fulfill the need for an IIT one should not put much weight on the demand for an IIT."

The above logic is absolutely ridiculous and filled with falsehoods and contradicts with MHRD actions with respect to other states.

1. NISER and IITs have different admission process and they have no connection with each other. NISER uses the NEST test  ( ) conducted by DAE while IITs have their own JEE. The secretary may be confusing NISER with IISER which do take some students from the IIT JEE merit list.

2. NISER will not fulfill the need for an IIT. Currently, NISER only offers M.Sc degrees in Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. Some day in the future it may offer a few technology degrees. However, it will not be soon, as having full-fledged engineering degrees will defeat the purpose of NISER, as
students when given a choice between Science and Engineering disciplines in the same institute will prefer engineering, and as a result the NISER science departments, the reason de etre for the establishment of NISER, will not get good students. In this regard it may be noted that Science is second class in the
IITs where students prefer engineering over Science courses. Most students who get into sciences into IITs are the ones who can not get into any engineering disciplines.

Note that IISc, where both engineering and science are flourishing is different because it does not offer undergraduate degrees in science so there is no competition between student choosing between science and engineering after +2.

3. Even if NISER abandons its reason-de-etre and decides to expand into engineering aggressively, the infrastructure, especially the 300 acres allocated to NISER will not allow that. Note that the IITs in Patna and Hyderabad will have 500 acres land.

4. The engineering and technology disciplines will not be established in NISER that quickly, and because of the break-neck industrial progress happening in Orissa, it needs a top notch engineering and technological institute like an IIT "yesterday."

5. Finally the following actions contradict the assertion that Orissa will not get an IIT because it has a NISER

   (a) Maharastra was given a IISER even though it has an IIT. (Both are funded by MHRD.)

   (b) West Bengal was given an IISER and an IIT like institute (IIEST) eventhough it has an IIT. (All are funded by    MHRD and the IISER and the IIEST will be in the Kolkata area.)

   (c) Andhra Pradesh was given an IIT and two IIESTs. (All are funded by MHRD.)

   (d) Kerala was given an IISER, an IIEST and an IIST (Indian Institute of Space Technology); the first two funded by    MHRD, while the last one is funded by Ministry of Science and Technology.

So why is that when it comes to Orissa, when Orissa is now at the bottom of per-capita MHRD funding on higher education institutions, NISER counts against Orissa. This is despite that Orissa needs to bridge the largest gap in higher education enrollment, from 6.1% to the targeted 15%.

Is it because the above four have UPA allied governments while Orissa does not?

Also, earlier it has been remarked in the Parliament by an UPA minister that Orissa has this and that institute (such as Inst of Physics etc.). Yes, but other states have more of such institutes. See the list we compiled at

So why does it count against Orissa getting an IIT, and does not count against the other states.

Is not this blatant discrimination against Orissa?

Is not such discrimination in the past a main reason why Orissa is now at the bottom of higher education enrollment and many other parameters?

Is that what the government of India wants? And in this information age of news media and Internet will the people of Orissa stand-by and just meekly accept this blatant discrimination?

1 comment January 31st, 2008

NISER will fulfill Orissa’s IIT demand: Samaja

(Acknowledgment: The Samaja article was brought to my notice by Prof. R. Nayak. My greatest appreciation to him for his concerns.)

This is really crazy and ridiculous. Only for Orissa, all these arguments are made; West Bengal can have an IIT, an IIESR and an IIT like institution (IIEST) all funded by MHRD; the later two in the same city Kolkata; Maharastra can have both IITs and IISERs funded by MHRD; Andhra Pradesh can have an IIT and two IIESTs (one IIT and one IIEST in the same city) funded by MHRD, Kerala can be given an MHRD funded IISER and a Ministry of Sc & Tech funded IIST (Indian Inst of Space Technology); but when it comes to Orissa it can not have an IIT because it is having NISER. (The later is funded by DAE while IITs are funded by MHRD. )

People and representatives of Orissa should not take this lying down. They must take this opportunity to explain GOI how such arguments are used against Orissa to harm Orissa and stunt its progress.

Watch out for further reactions to this apparent trial balloon floated by MHRD.  They floated many such trial balloons when we were demanding NIS and they were countered by the people and representatives of Orissa. The same needs to be done urgently.

January 31st, 2008

Arjun Singh on Devious mode:

Following is  from

It has been proved time and again that Arjun Singh has no love for Orissa.

The Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister has always been unkind to the state, which is lagging behind on education front among other states.

And he is nicely talking to Naveen Patnaik and made him feel that the Centre is all out for Orissa to dole out largesse.

Chief Minister Mr.Patnaik and HRD Minister Mr.Singh had a meeting on 24 January at New Delhi.

Mark the words of Mr.Singh:

Orissa had a very good case for setting up a Central University in the KBK region.

There are strong possibilities of setting up of an IIT or IIM in Orissa in view of industrial growth.

Chief Minister returned happy and took no time to issue the Press Release.

But insiders in the MHRD and educationists are reading between the lines.

There are two types of Central Universities (CU).

One is regular CU of which 16 are to be set up in 11th plan with an investment of Rs.300 crore each.

Another World Class Central University (WCCU) of which 14 are to be established during next 5 years with an investment of Rs.1000 crore each.

Mr.Singh is hinting towards the regular CU in KBK with an investment of Rs.300 crore.

But Orissa deserves a WCCU in coastal Orissa and CU in KBK or vice versa as the level of investment in higher education in Orissa is much below than the other major states like Maharastra and Madhya Pradesh.

Similarly Mr.Singh said Orissa deserves an IIT or IIM.

But the state is demanding IIT, IIM and IIIT for last so many years and the Minister HRD is playing hide and sick game over the establishment of these institutions.

In order to establish an IIT, MHRD spends Rs.1000 crore and for an IIM it provides Rs.150-200 crore.

To be very frank, Mr.Singh is fooling the state so far setting up the higher institutions of learning in the state, alleged a senior mandarin.

And the pathetic part of the story is we believe him, which will end up in receiving pea nuts in the name of largesse of Centre, cautioned … Professor Chitta Baral of Arizona State University.

So the State Government must come out with Vision Document for the Centres of Higher Learning including a WCCU, Cu-KBK, IIT, IIM and IIIT in the state, said Dhirendra Kar, a leading NRO.

These demands to be harped time and again with the UPA Government till it is achieved, said he.

January 25th, 2008

CM meets HRD Minister Arjun Singh on IIT, IIM and KBK Central University

Update: Also covered in other papers (Statesman, Pioneeer, New Indian Express, Pragativadi, etc.) and sites such as

The first report has come out in Kalinga Times. Following is an excerpt.

Union Human Resource Development Minister Arjun Singh on Wednesday assured that the Centre would soon take a decision on Orissa government’s demand for the setting up higher institutions of learning in the State.

Orissa had a very good case for setting up of a Central University in the KBK region, Singh indicated when Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik called on him in New Delhi.

Singh also said that there was a strong possibility of setting up of an IIT/IIM in Orissa in view of the industrial growth being witnessed in the State, according to an official release.

Patnaik demanded for the setting up of an IIT, an IIM and a multi-disciplinary Central university in the KBK region in view of the current industrial boom in the State. An IIT should be established in the State during the 11th Five Year Plan period, he said.

Samaja’ coverage on this is as follows:

January 23rd, 2008

Naveen continues to raise the IIT issue

Following is an excerpt from a newsreport in Times of India.

Patnaik alleged that the state had been neglected by the Centre on several fronts like establishment of an IIT, IIM and expansion of railway network.

2 comments December 27th, 2007

Orissa in slumber and may miss taking advantage of the 11th plan opportunities in higher education:

Action Item: Readers concerned about this may write to the CM at to take immediate action and copy to one of the journalists in Orissa (perhaps Braja babu of at

Following is from

Orissa this time also is all set to miss the bus for Higher Education.

While the Higher Education Program for the Eleventh Five Year Plan is being final touches, Orissa is in deep slumber. 

And who will be able to wake up a sleeping state, which is at the lowest ebb of the investment plan of the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD), asks educationists.

The Eleventh Plan is historical because investment in HRD sector will receive a big jump.

Just follow these numbers:

Currently there are 7 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) s that was made over 60 years; there will 8 more during the 11th Plan.

There are 23 central universities made over 60 years; 30 more will be added during the Plan.

There are no world class universities in India and planners have decided to go for 14.

There are 6 Indian Institute of Management (IIM) s that was made over 60 years; there is a plan to establish 7 more.

There is a plan to set up Indian Institute of Public Health (IIPH).

Currently there is a single National Institute of Design that was made in 60 years since Independence; there is a plan to make 4 more during the Plan.

The 11th Plan’s stated goal is to take the higher education enrolment to 15 per cent.

Orissa’s higher education enrolment is at the bottom 6.1 per cent.

So Orissa must be working very hard to take advantage of the 11th plan.

Lo behold ! No home work in sight and this time also the state is going to loose heavily, feel the educationists.

Chitta Baral, Professor in Arizona State University is a worried person.

And Prof. Baral has every reason to worry.

We need a world class university and not a single soul has raised his voice for the same in the Government, lamented Prof.Baral.

This type of institution will have a budget of Rs.1000 crore. 

It  would be again a pity, if the state is going to lose the same as there is  opportunity to make a strong case.

It has the Ravenshaw University which without any affiliate colleges, matches the expected model of a world class university.

But will the State Government make such a case, asks Prof.Baral.

While Orissa is haunted by deaths due to cholera, it will be an appropriate place for setting up an Indian Institute of Public Health (IIPH)

Till date the State has made no efforts to get one of the proposed 5-7 IIPHs in Orissa.

So far Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) s are concerned Orissa has not done much beyond the Chief Minister sending a couple of half-baked and impolite letters to the Prime Minister.

On the other hand, many other states have sent more detailed proposals.

Take the case of KBK Central University, in the past Orissa has made a case regarding a Central University in KBK.

However, it has not followed up on it recently.

Is not it time the State Government to follow up on this and makes a case, by pointing to the central universities in the North East, asks he.

It is not too late for many of the above; otherwise Orissa will get the pea nuts and predictably complain about Central apathy against the state.

3 comments December 18th, 2007

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