Safe Heaven for Northeast Girls in Bangalore

Girls from the northeastern states heading to tech city for college education will soon have a dedicated hostel with their own cuisine on Bangalore University campus.

The university syndicate has sanctioned 22,000 square metres of land within its verdant environs for the hostel whose construction is being financed by the North Eastern Council (NEC).

“This project aims to attract more girls from the Northeast to Bangalore by offering exclusive accommodation,” registrar K.K. Seethamma told. A university delegation, led by the registrar, had signed an MoU with the NEC in Shillong on June 8 to construct the hostel. The three-story building will come up at a cost of Rs 13.85 crore. “It will have 96 rooms on three floors (ground plus two),” said Seethamma.

Under the agreement, 75 per cent of the beds, which would accommodate nearly 250 girls, would be earmarked for students from the Northeast. The remaining will be at the discretion of the university, which will maintain the facility, she said. At present students, irrespective of their background, are accommodated in four hostels, of which only one is on the university campus. But a good number of Northeast students manage on their own.

Students enrolled in any of the 73 affiliated colleges of the university can avail of the facility at a fee that would be decided later. “They may even get their own cuisine as we plan to outsource the canteen which would be run by the girls themselves,” said Seethamma.

With tenders to be floated in a week, the university expects to lay the foundation in the first half of August. “Under the agreement, we need to finish the work in 30 months. But we plan to get it up and running in 10 months so that students can occupy the rooms next year,” said the registrar.

On why a dedicated hostel wasn’t considered for boys from the Northeast, she said most of them live independently although four existing university hostels are ready to take them.

Simanta Sharma, spokesperson for Assam Association Bangalore, said Northeast associations had sent a memorandum to the Prime Minister, the President and the home minister last year, seeking a girls’ hostel. “We thought it was imperative, especially after attacks on our students in Delhi,” said Sharma, who is also the founder of North East Integrity, Development and Empowerment Association, a national body with chapters in other cities as well.

Source: The Telegraph