Property dispute with Tribhuvan University hit New Universities



Vice-chancellors of three new universities of Nepal, i.e. the Mid-Western University (MWU), the Far-Western University (FWU) and the Agriculture and Forestry University (AFU) said they were facing various difficulties in running new programmes and conducting regular activities in their universities because of the property dispute with Tribhuvan University.
As per the three acts that Parliament had endorsed on June 17, 2010 for the establishment of the new universities, Tribhuvan University is supposed to hand over Siddhanath Science Campus and Siddhanath Multiple Campus to the FWU and Surkhet Education Campus, Birendranagar Multiple Campus and Public Science Campus to the  Mid-Western University (MWU).
The Agriculture and Forest Act 2010 envisions converting the Institute of Agriculture and Animal Sciences, Agriculture Campus based in Rampur and Forestry Campus, Hetauda, to Agriculture and Forestry University (AFU) 
These universities have already prepared their curricula and started classes but the Tribhuvan University is yet to hand over the ownership of these campuses to new universities. In the forestry campus, Tribhuvan University had opened admission for Bachelors in Forestry, according to VCs. 
Speaking at an interaction organised by Education Journalists Network (EJON) today, Professor Padam Lal Devkota,  Mid-Western University (MWU) vice chancellor, said, “Tribhuvan University has barred us from using our properties because it has not been handed over to us legally,” adding, “Due to this, we have been facing various problems.” He said, “We have been running 43 courses in course of two years and acquired 24 bighas of land and constructed a science building but due to the dispute between Tribhuvan University and our university regarding the right to existing campuses, we have not been able to run our programmes and add infrastructure in a full fledged way.”
He said they have already spent a lot of time meeting the Tribhuvan University officials to sort out the confusion regarding the right to property but in vain. Kailash Nath Pyakurel, AFU vice chancellor, said the first technical university has been fulfilling all its responsibilities such as teaching, conducting research and disseminating the research findings.
He said, “After a long struggle, we have been able to conduct academic activities in the existing campuses but Tribhuvan University is yet to hand over the land ownership certificate to us.” He said the Tribhuvan University has been using the property arbitrarily, adding that they are in no position to stop this misuse.
He said that Tribhuvan University had taken away some animals from the university’s livestock farm without their consent a few months ago and they could not do anything about it.
Professor Jaya Raj Awasthi, FWU vice-chancellor, said they held talks for 29 times with the Tribhuvan University officials, in vain.