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Students plan road stir

Students of Mango-based Jamshedpur Workers’ College have threatened to launch an agitation against Mango Notified Area Committee (MNAC) for delay in repairing the crater-riddled approach road to the institution.

Though the civic body recently informed the college authorities that the work to repair the 250-metre stretch could be started only after the rainy season, the students are worried that the delay may cause embarrassment for the cradle.

The college and its 10,000-odd students are gearing up for an international conference — Bharatiya Sanskriti Main Vigyan Tatwa Ka Avdharna — to be held on the campus between September 11 and 13. Over 300 delegates, including Union HRD minister Smriti Irani and former President of India A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, from different parts of the country and abroad are likely to arrive here for the event.

“We are extremely worried over the poor condition of the road as there are only a couple of weeks left for the international conference. Delegates, who will visit the institute, will only take back a bad impression about the college as well as the city. Our faculty members and students, wearing black badges and masks, will stage peaceful demonstrations in front of the district collectorate and the MNAC’s office next week for mounting pressure on the administration to take immediate steps,” said principal D.P. Shukla.

Hemant Kumar Sinha, a second-year undergraduate student of the college, said: “It is shameful that the local urban body is approaching the issue in such a callous manner. Nowadays, roads are being constructed even during monsoon. In fact, Jusco has been carrying out road repairing work amid downpours in different localities of the city. MNAC can adopt the same technology.”

The entire 12-ft-wide approach road to the five-decades-old college is dotted with craters and the rains have only made the situation worse. The faculties as well as the students, especially women, dread the stretch, which becomes almost non-negotiable during the rainy season.

The college authorities claimed that the civic body had cleaned garbage scattered near the college gate and removed muck and filth from the approach road recently after repeated pleas but did not take any step to repair it.

“Earlier, garbage remained unattended for weeks on both sides of the stretch. It has changed but the condition of the road is still the same,” said Pawan Kumar, another undergraduate student.

When contacted, MNAC special officer Jagadish Yadav said that they had floated tenders, inviting contractors for repairing the road with the condition that the work must complete in the first week of September. But no one showed interest.

“None of the registered contractors was willing to carry out repair during the rainy season. Again, most of them are worried over the strict deadline. We will take out another tender on August 28. We are helpless on this issue,” said the special officer.