| Saidpur hostel in Patna. Telegraph picture |
Patna University students have decided to vote for candidates who would take up eviction of illegal boarders at Saidpur hostels.
Frustrated over frequent disturbances at the hostels and the alleged laxity of the administration in looking into their grievances, the December 11 election has come as an opportunity for the students to raise their causes. The hostels for postgraduate students ha-ve been illegally occupied, mostly by former pupils.
Sources said neither the university nor the administration has tried to evict the boarders, as many of them owe allegiance to ruling and opposition parties. First year postgraduate geology student Ravi Kumar said: “We will support candidates in the elections who promise to provide hostels for postgraduate students.”
He added that though Saidpur hostels at Rajendra Nagar were meant to accommodate postgraduate students of the university, most are forced to put up at private lodges.
Prashant Kumar Gautam, another postgraduate student, said: “For undergraduate science students, hostel facility is provided by Patna Science College. However, PG students have to put up at private lodges because of the administration’s failure to evict the illegal boarders from Saidpur hostels.” Many students said they end up spending around Rs 5,000 on food and lodging every month at rented accommodation, while the cost would be half in university hostels.
The university has, in the meantime, decided to construct a boundary wall around the Saidpur hostels to keep away outsiders. The institute has also decided to demolish the existing hostels and develop the premises as its south campus. The university administration has plans to shift Vanijya Mahavidyalaya, the directorate of distance education and the postgraduate department of commerce and economics to the proposed south campus.
PU proctor Kriteshwar Prasad said: “We will again write a letter to the district administration to vacate illegal occupants at Saidpur hostels before the election.” He added that the university has asked hostel superintendents to submit a list of illegal occupants, who would then be evicted.