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Move to wind up Schaffter Hall centre creates concern

Staff Reporter

TIRUNELVELI: The Manonmaniam Sundaranar University administration’s decision to wind up its Schaffter Hall premises and shift all the four departments functioning from this rented building to the university premises at Abhishekapatti has caused concern among the students.

To enable the aspirants get applications and other information from the Directorate of Distance and Continuing Education and the students of Physical Education and Sports use the facilities at Anna Stadium and leading colleges of Palayamkottai, these two departments and the Department of Youth Welfare and National Service Scheme were housed at Schaffter Hall. However, during the middle of the academic year, the administration has decided to close down this centre, located at an easily accessible area, and shift it to the Abhishekapatti premises, situated 16 km away from the Schaffter Hall.

Department of Physical Education and Sports is likely to be shifted to the Abhishekapatti premises where no facility has been created so far to nurture sports activities.

“Since ours is a residential programme, we have hired a house near the Schaffter Hall, which is advantageously situated closer to the well-equipped Anna Stadium, St. John’s College and St. Xavier’s College, which are known for their facilities relating to sports. With the help of these three institutions, we can carry out training activities in the morning and evening. If we are shifted to the Abhishekapatti premises during the middle of an academic year, finding a house at Gandhi Nagar (near MSU) is difficult. And more difficult will be learning the finer aspects of sports with no facility at Abhishekapatti,” said all physical education students.

Except a 400-metre track and a half built edifice for the Department of Physical Education and Sports, no facility has been created so far on the Abhishekapatti premises. Hence, the students are utilising the modern facilities at Anna Stadium and also at St. Xavier’s College and St. John’s College.

If the students, who can now have frequent friendly matches with the college and sports hostel teams to fine-tune their skills, will be denied of these opportunities, physical directors of the colleges here opine.

If the students have to use the facilities at Anna Stadium and other colleges after they are moved to Abhishekapatti, they will have to travel for about 36 km a day to come down to the stadium and return to the university.

Though university officials claim that the Schaffter Hall centre is being closed to save the monthly rental charges of Rs. 20,000 and ensure the functioning of all departments from the same campus, sports students said this amount should not hinder the development.

Madurai Kamaraj – Manonmaniam Sundaranar University Teachers’ Association (MUTA) secretary V. Ponnuraj said the matter would be taken up with the university administration during the Syndicate meeting, scheduled for January 27 to find asolution. Meanwhile, the Students’ Federation of India here has announced that the organisation would support the students.

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