| OUAT students gherao the vice-chancellor’s office on Thursday in Bhubaneswar. Picture by Ashwinee Pati |
Bhubaneswar, Jan. 31: Students of the College of Forestry under the Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) today gheraoed the vice-chancellor’s office to protest against re-appointment of a teacher who was transferred from here more than a year ago.
They alleged that Ashok Sahoo, an assistant professor of forestry, had forcibly locked the college lab for the past one-and-half years, affecting the practical classes.
“Important equipment such as the geographical information system (GIS), computers, projectors and global positioning system (GPS) devices have been locked up for over one-and-half years. This is affecting our practical classes in subjects such as GIS and remote-sensing application, forest management and wildlife,” said Soumya Ranjan, a student.
The lab was allegedly locked by Sahoo after he was transferred to a different college.
Sahoo was transferred in March 2011 after an inquiry committee was formed by the varsity to probe into some allegations made against him by some students.
However, after a gap of more than a year, the varsity authorities yesterday passed orders of posting Sahoo in the College of Forestry once again.
“We do not want him back in our college. He has hampered our studies and kept the lab locked. It is strange that despite knowing everything, the authorities have decided to depute him here once again,” said Suryakanta, a student.
The students said they would not budge until the varsity authorities revoke their order to re-appoint Sahoo.
However, OUAT registrar S.K. Ray claimed ignorance about the matter and said that the students’ complaints would be placed before the competent authority.