Bhubaneswar: The Centurion University of Technology and Management (CUTM) was battered by cyclone Fani, even as it was beginning to recover from the effects of cyclone Titli.
Nature has been unkind to the only skill-based private university in Odisha in the true metaphorical sense. In October 2018, cyclone Titli had caused significant damage to CUTM’s Paralakhemundi campus. The management was just recovering from its effect when cyclone Fani struck — this time on its Jatni campus on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar.
“The soul and heart of the campus are gone,” rued president of the university, Prof Mukti Kanta Mishra, pegging damage to the 10-year-old campus to around Rs 30 crore.
“We have lost 2,500 trees and 1.50 lakh sq ft of area. Even the main gate made of stone and concrete has been damaged along with 3km of boundary wall. The workshops have been blown away,” he told Odisha Bytes.
The ferocity of the cyclone can be gauged from the fact that buildings with high-end architectural designs, which can withstand wind speeds of up to 250kmph, were also damaged. “All the 100-odd ACs and electric fans fell off on impact of unrelenting wind speed,” he said.
“All I can say is that 10 years of hard labour went down the drain within just half-an-hour of the cyclone hitting the campus,’ Prof Mishra said.
“But we did not cow down. Classes resumed within days with the help of gensets. We did not make the students succumb to depression. Power supply has still not been restored on the campus, but classes are on”.
Regrettably, he said no one from the government has visited the campus to take stock of the damage. “We are the only skill-based university and skill promotion remains high on the government’s agenda. Even then, no support has come our way”.
Spread over 40 acres land on the foothills of Barunei hills, near Jatni town, the campus is adjacent to National Institute of Science, Education and Research (NISER), Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
Apart from Paralakhemundi and Bhubaneswar, the varsity has campuses in Rayagada, Balangir and Chhattrapur.