Come this August, the dreams of hundreds of people of Shyampur, a rural area in Howrah, will be fulfilled with opening of the Industrial Training Institute (ITI) that has come up on the plot of land donated by a Congress MLA five decades ago.
CPI(M) had scrapped the project as the plot was donated by a Congress MLA and distributed the land, a part of which has been reclaimed, among sharecroppers. Classes on the college that has come up on the reclaimed land on a public-private partnership (PPP) model will start from August.
Five decades ago, a doctor from the village had ‘dreamt’ of a college for technical education in the area, which is comprised mainly of two blocks – Shyampur I and Shyampur II. He had approached the then Congress MLA from Shyampur Assembly constituency Murari Mohan Manna with his prayer to take initiative to set up the college.
Manna, who was the MLA from the seat in 1962, had handed over a plot of 32 bigha to the state government with the hope that the dream of the aged doctor will be fulfilled and hundreds of youth will get an opportunity to study courses in technical education without travelling too far.
The foundation stone for the ITI was laid sometime between 1962 and 1967, after the MLA had put pressure on senior cabinet ministers for fast execution of the project. But the expectations of the local people came down, after the Left Front began gaining traction in that state. Their dream was completely shattered when it finally came to power.
The project of setting up the technical college was scrapped and the land was distributed among sharecroppers, despite objections raised by the local people. The apparent reason behind scrapping the project was that the plot on which it was supposed to come up was donated by a Congress MLA.
The then local CPI(M) leaders had paid no heed to the request of the residents of the area when they were told that setting up of the college would help in making the local youths eligible to get jobs.
A majority of the residents of Shyampur Assembly constituency were eventually dissatisfied by the Left Front in 2001 and voted in favour of the Trinamool Congress candidate Kalipada Mondal. He had a clean sweep in 2016 Assembly election as well.
Despite being an MLA since 2001, Mondal had failed to do anything to set up the college of which the residents of the area had once dreamt of. Finally, with TMC coming to power, led by Mamata Banerjee, the task of getting back the land started following proper negotiations with the sharecroppers among whom the plots were distributed. It finally became possible to get back 18 bighas of land out 32 bighas.
Without any further delays, the state government accepted the proposal of the local MLA and decided to set up the ITI at Shyampur to fulfil the five-decade old dream of the residents.
The construction work of the two-storeyed ITI college building has been completed and the process has begun to start classes from August this year. Initially, students will get the option of studying in any of the 10 trades. There will be around 30 students in each of the trades. Hence, initially the classes will start with around 300 students.
Mondal, the local MLA, said: “This is our dream come true. It would have never taken place until and unless people had thrown out Left Front. Hundreds of youth will get opportunity to make them self ready to get a job in their respective fields after studying here.”