New site for oldest school

The Jharia rehabilitation project has got a shot in the arm with the district's oldest high school located in the underground fire zone agreeing to shift to a new location.

By Praduman Choubey
  • Published 8.10.15
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Fire-hit Jharia Raj Plus Two High School, Dhanbad, has agreed to shift to a new location. Picture by Gautam Dey

The Jharia rehabilitation project has got a shot in the arm with the district's oldest high school located in the underground fire zone agreeing to shift to a new location.

Jharia Raj Plus Two High School - established in 1866 - in fire-affected Bhagatdih area will move to a site around 5km away near Kamdhenu Petrol Pump. Principal Yatranand Chaubey agreed to the proposal at a meeting of a committee, comprising heads of different institutions located in the fire zone, held on Tuesday evening under the chairmanship of rehabilitation and resettlement in-charge of Jharia Rehabilitation and Development Authority (JRDA) Gopalji.

This apart, RSP College, the oldest degree college established in 1951 and sharing the same campus hosting the school, and an age-old water tank of Mada, just 3km away, have also agreed to the relocation in principle.

Principal Chaubey said: "Our institution has historic significance as it is the oldest high school in the district. But student safety is of paramount importance to us. Since the underground fire is inching towards our school, the best option now is to move base."

But Chaubey added that they would relocate only when they get the desired infrastructure. "We have a two-storey building with 24 classrooms in Jharia. We will shift to near Kamdhenu Petrol Pump only if a similar building is given to us. The new site is around 5km from the existing campus and easily accessible to students."

JRDA's Gopalji said, "We will write to the general manager of Bastacola area of BCCL to transfer the land in the name of the college as soon as possible."

Discussions were also held on shifting RSP College and the water tank, but consensus could not be reached as both are eyeing BCCL's 8.90-acre plot in front of Kumar Talkies, Dhansar. "We have sought details regarding the land from BCCL as some portions of the plot could be coal bearing. If the major chunk of the land is non-coal bearing, we can think of shifting both RSP College and Mada water tank to the 8.90 acres," said Gopalji.

Gurdeep Singh, vice chancellor of VBU , under which RSP College falls, is also okay with a plot somewhere in Baliapur, where a majority of the displaced are being rehabilitated. "We will explore the possibility of shifting the college to Baliapur with help from the administration. The college is demanding around 15 acres in Baliapur. We have also sought the status of around three acres in Patherdih from BCCL," Gopalji added.

The meeting was also attended by managing director of Mada Anil Pandey, principal of RSP College-Jharia J.M. Lugun, head of the botany department J.N. Singh and land acquisition officer of JRDA Jugal Kishor Prasad.