The Bharathiar University Teachers' Association (BHUTA) will urge the new Government to find an alternative land for the building of Anna University of Technology, Coimbatore, instead of the present location inside the campus of Bharathiar University.

Speaking toThe Hindu on the wishlist the association was about to place before the new Ministry and Government, M. Jayakumar, President of BHUTA, pointed out that the land issue topped the list. The earlier government allotted 130.33 acres of land inside the Bharathiar University for constructing buildings for the technical university in December 2010, for which works began in January 2011.

The Association with the support of other teacher associations had been protesting against the order of the Government citing various reasons. Mr. Jayakumar said the association members would meet the Higher Education Minister P. Palaniappan and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa next week to make a representation for shifting the Anna University of Technology campus to another location.

“We want to take up the matter against the establishment of the technical university adjacent to Bharathiar University for this will not be appropriate from a long term perspective. The technical university has 182 institutions in the whole of the Western region. It should ask for space along some national / State highway and not on this road which is already too congested,” he said.

It may be recalled that the association along with students had organised several protests since works began on the adjoining land. They had urged the earlier Government to withdraw the order, which came to naught. There were various issues involving transfer of land, compensation for original landowners, part of the allotted land being used as trial fields, change in approach road, and so on.

C. Pichandy, general secretary of Association of University Teachers, said the association would extend its full support to the BHUTA's revived efforts.

Among the other demands, BHUTA would suggest to the government to set up a State-level Higher Education Development Corporation which would lend loans to students for education. Since all students were not able to avail bank loans for education, the establishment of the corporation was sought for.

A State Skills Commission on the lines of the National Skills Commission to be set up for studying and assessing the market demands and also helping academia in designing and updating courses accordingly.

Identify universities and make them centres of excellence based on their expertise in one or two disciplines. This would give more focus on those disciplines.

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