Many students of the Hemagangotri campus of University of Mysore and residents of Kenchattahalli staged a protest in Hassan on Tuesday demanding the district administration stop construction of a truck terminal on the grazing land next to the university campus.
The students had earlier appealed to the officers concerned and had written to the Chief Minister, Higher Education Minister and others to stop the truck terminal, citing that it would affect the academic environment. As the truck terminal is coming up close to the classrooms and hostel, the students had to study amidst high decibel noise.
Now the students’ protest has gained the support of the residents of Kenchattahalli, a village close to the campus. The villagers argued that the gomala belonged to the village and should not be utilised for the truck terminal. Earlier when the villagers urged the district administration to utilize the land for housing purposes, the Deputy Commissioner had refused to grant permission. How could the same land be allotted for the truck terminal, the villagers wondered. Former Taluk Panchayat member K.M. Dinesh said the district administration take back the land and retain it as gomala land.
The students, who staged a dharna in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office, said that they would not stop the protest until their demand was fulfilled. The Karnataka Government had decided to set up a new university on the same campus. The land should be utilized for the expansion of the campus, they demanded.
Villagers Kannapa Gowda, Kumar, Susheelamma and students Amar, Chetan K.G., Dayanidhi and others led the protest.