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More hostels for girl students

July 3: Dispur will create additional infrastructure and facilities for women at Gauhati University and Cotton College in view of a sharp rise in enrolment of girl students in these institutions.

An Assam government official told The Telegraph that the number of girls in institutions like Gauhati University and Cotton College was fewer than what it is now.

He said there were nearly 80 per cent boys and 20 per cent girls in these institutes, because of which the number of hostels and other facilities for boys was more.

He said though the situation has changed now, it has been seen the institutes cannot accommodate girls for lack of proper infrastructure.

For example, there are 70 per cent girls in Cotton College and Gauhati University. While Cotton College has seven boys’ hostels, it has only two hostels for girls.

Gauhati University has 20 hostels, of which 11 are for boys and the rest for girls.

The official said the government has sanctioned a special project of Rs 1,000 crore, which would be sanctioned to the different institutes for four years, according to the requirement.

“Under the special project, Gauhati University and Cotton College will receive extra funds to create additional infrastructure like girls’ hostel, girls common room, science laboratory for girls and even separate library for girls,” the official said.

Gauhati University vice-chancellor Okhil Kumar Medhi recently highlighted the problem of poor infrastructure and lack of hostel facility for girls before education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.

“In the past few years, there has been a 75 per cent increase in the number of girl students. But our infrastructure hasn’t changed and girls have to look for accommodation outside,” Medhi said, while making a PowerPoint presentation of GU’s plan for development during a meeting of vice-chancellors at NEDFi House here last week.

The official said while there would be more facilities for girls at Cotton College, the government has asked the principals of the city-based degree colleges like Handique Girls’ College, B. Borooah College and Gauhati Commerce College to submit the status of girl students at their institute.

The female students and their parents feel that more hostel accommodation should be created for girls on the college campuses, as they find it safer in comparison to PGs and rented accommodations outside.

“My daughter is studying BSc in Cotton College and did not get a hostel seat last year. Now she is staying at a private hostel and paying monthly rental of Rs 4,000. Despite paying such rental she is not happy with the hostel facilities. Hostel food is not up to the mark. I am worried for her. If she could have manage a hostel she would not have to pay much cheaper rental with better facilities and security,” Iqbal Hussain, a resident of Hajo in Kamrup district, said.