SRINAGAR, Feb 07: Inaugurated three years ago by the then PDP-BJP coalition government, the School of Architecture-University of Kashmir is not only headless since 2017 but has been shifted from Srinagar to a far off place in Ganderbal district.
The school has an intake capacity of 35 students per batch and presently around 100 students are on its rolls. Recently the state higher education department issued a notification to start its academic programmes at Naristan Colony situated at hilltop of Safapora township in Central Kashmir’s Ganderbal District, where a site has been proposed for establishing the permanent campus for School of Architecture.
However, the students are up in arms against the decision of shifting of temporary campus to Safapora Ganderbal in a newly established building of Government College of Engineering at Technology which is situated in parallel to the site identified for establishment of the School of Architecture.
“Irony is that no construction work has been carried out on the said site for our school instead we have been asked to ,” a group of aggrieved students told Kashmir Despatch.
Talking to Kashmir Despatch, a senior officer in the department of higher education said the school was registered by the council of Architecture and is affiliated with University of Kashmir.
“It was being run in a temporary campus at Government Degree College Bemina in Srinagar outskirts and is headless from last three academic years. This has caused huge inconvenience to the students who have been enrolled in this school,” he told Kashmir Despatch, pleading anonymity.
The school was inaugurated by former education minister Syed Muhammad Altaf Bukhari who had taken the initiative to introduce skill based education including Architecture and Nursing in Kashmir.
Meanwhile, sources told Kashmir Despatch that the authorities in the erstwhile State had taken this issue with the officials of University of Kashmir to give some space for running the academic programmes for school of Architecture in University Campus.
“Sofar no official notification has been issued in this regard,” some enrolled students of school of Architecture said while demanding that their academic programmes should be run from the Kashmir University Campus, as there is no transport facility nor any hostel facility available at Ganderbal campus which is three kilometers away from Safapora Ganderbal.
The principal degree college Bemina told this reporter, that it is not in their domain to further run the academic arrangements from Bemina campus. “It is the government decision to shift the school of Architecture to Safapora Ganderbal,” the principal said.
Registrar Kashmir University, Dr Nisar Ahmad said: “It is a government decision to shift the school of Architecture from Bemina Degree College to Safapora as a part of makeshift arrangement.”
Mr. Talat Parvez, the Commissioner Secretary Higher Education said that there are set norms from All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to run the college from permanent site, as they had got a special permission to run the school of architecture from temporary campus for the period of two years.
“Now it is incumbent for us to shift the institute to its permanent place, otherwise the registration of this institute will get cancelled,” the commissioner secretary higher education department added.
He further told this newspaper that as the class work will get resume we will put all adequate facilities on ground level including hostel and transport.