With Chief Minister Oommen Chandy taking personal interest, the K.R. Narayanan Memorial National Institute of Visual Science and Arts, which had been in the backburner for five long years, appears to have received a fresh lease of life.

The institute, the beginning of which was made in 2006, was expected to develop as a centre of excellence in the filed of visual arts, predominantly film education, and was one of the dream projects of the then Oommen Chandy government. The institute was to be constituted under the aegis of the Centre for Continuing Education.

In fact, it was with much fanfare that the then Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Priyaranjan Dasmunshi lid the foundation stone at the sleepy village of Thekkumthala near Pallickathode nearly 30 km from the town.

Period of inactivity

The government had planned to make use of the defunct Government Lower Primary School which had a campus of 60 cents. In addition, the government acquired 10 acres adjacent to the school campus. Only one family had to be relocated.

Though things moved fast in the initial stages, there was a long period of inactivity during the LDF regime.

Now, the centre is expected to come up on the basis of a fresh report and may focus on providing programmes at the undergraduate, postgraduate levels and also research programmes. The first phase is expected to be completed within a year.

The K.R. Narayanan Institute is the second media centre of excellence to come up in the district, the first one being the new branch of the Indian Institute of Mass Communication.