Patna: Fate of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) centre at Kishanganj hangs in balance with Bihar government allegedly failing to provide a single plot of 250 acres to the AMU administration to open it.

Official sources said erstwhile AMU vice-chancellor P K Abdul Azis while informing the state government in 2008 of the Centre's decision to open the centre at Katihar had asked for a single plot of land measuring 250 acres to 300 acres free of cost to begin construction.

But the state government acquired the required land in three separate pieces in Kishanganj district instead of making available of a single plot of land in Katihar.

"Since the land being made available by the state government is in three separate pieces at places along Bahadurganj-Thakurganj road, located around 6 km to 7 km from Kishanganj, the proposal has not been approved by AMU administration," the sources said.

Bihar Human Resource Development Department Principal Secretary Anjani Kumar Singh had in a letter to AMU VC had justified the government's stand and said the state cabinet had already sanctioned the proposal to make available the land for the centre.

"There are several universities which have many campus far away from one to another, but here the state government has arranged the land, though into three pieces, are close by," he said.

Meanwhile, a fresh controversy has erupted with the Minister for Human Resource Development P K Sahi alleging that the AMU VC was "doing politics" over the issue and had not obtained the required sanction from President Pratibha Patil, who is visitor of the university. Singh said the AMU VC had a meeting with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on February 4, 2010 and gave a presentation about the centre.

"The AMU VC had undertaken a visit to Kishanganj and had expressed happiness over the appropriate acquisition of land in the district for the purpose," he claimed.

"The VC had asked the state government to make available the plots immediately, but later refused saying that it would not be appropriate as the land is in three separate pieces," he said.

The AMU VC had then on July 13, 2011 in a letter to the government asked for acquisition of land of a tea garden at Sheetalpur in Kishanganj district for the centre.

He had also suggested that if the land could not be acquired at Sheetalpur, the state government should make available a single plot of land at Chakla, Govindpur under Kishanganj block or at Bastakola under Kochadhamana block of the district.

"We have given priority for a plot at Dhanpura under Kochadhaman block," Singh said adding the district magistrate was also asked to look for a suitable plot for the purpose.               

Plots at Moharmari and Dhanpura villages were identified plots at Moharmari and Dhanpura villages under Kochadhaman block, Kumihiya village under Dighalbank block and Pauakhali and Ptebhari villages under Thakurganj block in the district by the district magistrate.

The AMU VC inspected the plots and emphasized acquiring land of a farmer Afjal Hussain at Sheetalpur village under Pothia Block in the District, Singh said.

Singh said, on thorough inspection of papers of Afjal Hussain revealed that most of the plots of land under his possession were distributed among beneficiaries of an 'Bhudan Yagna Samtiti' and therefore the farmer's possession over the plots was "illegal".

He said the AMU administration had not objected granting of plots into two pieces at two places by West Bengal government for its proposed centre at Murshidabad.

"We are at a loss to understand why AMU administration is not accepting the Bihar government proposal on the land and starting the work for its centre in Kishanganj," he said, adding the three plots were located hardly 100 metres away from each other.

Meanwhile, RJD, LJP and NCP have launched offensive against the Nitish Kumar government for allegedly not cooperating with AMU administration to open the centre.

"None but the Nitish Kumar government is responsible for the delay," state RJD President Ramchandra Purve and NCP General Secretary Tariq Anwar said.

The Centre had decided to open the AMU centers in five states with an estimated expenditure of Rs 2,000 crore in keeping with Sachchar Commission report.

(Agencies)