A giant puddle right in front of Jamshedpur Workers’ College in Mango on Thursday. Picture by Bhola Prasad
Less than five metres separate a wi-fi college campus from a garbage mound.
Students of Jamshedpur Workers’ College, which recently received national recognition for being hi-tech, have to negotiate watery craters and festering garbage to reach their campus.
The sole 12-feet approach road to the five-decades-old college with some 10,000 students on its rolls, is riddled with potholes and craters.
To add to the misery, garbage is left unattended for weeks on sides of the road. There is a heap of filth right at the entrance of the institute.
But, the cradle is a wi-fi zone — a rarity for colleges under Kolhan University — where all the departments are inter-linked. The college has Inflibnet (Information and Library Network) under the Union ministry of HRD that gives access to e-books and journals. It also has 16 CCTV cameras on campus.
“It is shame that while we are going all out to improve infrastructure to attract good students and improve our performance, unhygienic conditions right in front of our college and the bad road are a nightmare for students, especially those who don’t own vehicles and walk the nearly 250-metre stretch to reach the premises,” said principal D.P. Shukla.
At present, the college management is worried that their plans to host a conference — Bharatiya Sanskriti Main Vigyan Tatwa ka Awdharna — from September 11 to 13 on campus may get hampered due to this problem.
“We have invited former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and our Union HRD minister Smriti Irani for the conference. This apart, seven vice-chancellors of reputed varsities across the country will be attending the meet along with 300 delegates from India and abroad. Such a bad approach road dotted with garbage will be a serious blot for the college and city,” said Shukla.
The college administration has been raising the matter with local civic body Mango Notified Area Committee (MNAC). Last month, the collegewrote to additional district magistrate (law and order) B.K Munda. “We have written umpteen times to MNAC special officer and even to the district administration. But no one has even bothered to reply,” Shukla added.
MNAC special officer Jagadish Yadav admitted there was a genuine problem. He said that a blueprint had been prepared to repair the road.
“We have got their petition and have drawn up a plan to repair and widen the road. Work will commence shortly and it will be completed ahead of their international conference. We will also ensure that garbage is removed from time to time,” claimed Yadav.
Students, however, are not enthused by promises.
Ritesh Kumar (20), an undergraduate arts student at the college, said: “We have to be really careful not to let our feet touch the muddy water. But, what we cannot escape is the unbearable stench in the whole place. And, we are really scared that such unhygenic conditions may lead to serious health hazards.”