Kolkata: The authorities of Visva-Bharati University in Santiniketan, which was founded by Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore, have sought the intervention of President Draupadi Murmu in getting bank the land within the university campus that is currently under the jurisdiction of the West Bengal government.
A communiqué has been forward by the university authorities seeking the latter’s intervention in getting back the three km stretch of the land within the campus for its proper maintenance to preserve the recent achievement of getting the status of UNESCO World Heritage site.
University insiders said that the authorities were compelled to write to the President seeking her intervention in the matter, as there had been to reply to their earlier communiqué to the state government in the matter.
“By the end of the last month, we have sent a communiqué to the office of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to get back the land which is currently under the jurisdiction of the state public works department. But till date there has been no reply from the chief minister’s office in the matter and so we have decided to write to the Indian President seeking her intervention in the matter,” a university insider said.
He said that it is extremely important to ban movement of heavy-vehicles on that stretch of land so that the vibrations do not impact the different heritage structures adjacent to it.
The said stretch of land has a history. Originally, the 3 km stretch was with the state government. However, in 2017 the state government granted the university authorities the authority for maintenance of the land following an appeal from then interim Vice Chancellor Swapan Dutta.
Soon after that, the university authorities banned the movement of heavy goods vehicles through the said stretch of the land on the ground that the vibration caused by that might impacts the other heritage structures adjacent to the land stretch.
However, that decision of the university authorities faced objections from the residents there, who urged the Chief Minister to take back the land from the university authorities. Accordingly, in 2020 the Chief Minister again wrested the authority of the land stretch on behalf of the state public works department.