Hyderabad: Deputy Chief Minister Kadiam Srihari said the State Government was committed to saving universities’ lands across the State.
Osmania University owns 1,627 acres of land and of these, 56 acres of land was encroached upon by different persons. The university administration has been fighting a case in the Supreme Court in this regard, Srihari, who also holds the education portfolio, said during the question hour in the Legislative Council here on Tuesday.
“The 56 acre of encroached land is still in the possession of Osmania University and a compound wall has also been constructed,” said Srihari.
This apart, there were unauthorised dwellings spread over 24 acres and were being used by the poor and downtrodden. The government is exploring all the possibilities to allot double-bedroom houses to these poor people and shift them from the university campus, he said in reply to a question by MLC P Rajeshwar Reddy.
Replying to a question raised by Congress MLC M S Prabhakar Rao, the Education Minister said that of the 1,627 acres, 255.80 acres were leased to different government organisations, alienated to government organisations and about 35 acres for construction of houses for poor and downtrodden.
Among the 255 acres, 187.51 acres was leased eat into var to different government and quasi-government organisations with nominal amount.
Among all the lease agreements, only four lease agreements pertaining to CESS, Transco, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (HMWSSB) were renewed. The lease amounts too were revised as per the GO 571 issued in 2012, the Minister explained.
The lease amounts were revised for Transco at Rs 59 lakh per acre a year, IOC at Rs 1 lakh per acre a year, CESS at Rs 10,000 per acre a year and HMWSSB at Rs 10,000 per acre a year.
When Mr. Prabhakar questioned about the disparity in lease amounts, the Minister replied that lease periods and amounts were fixed by previous governments.
On the request made by the MLC to enhance the lease amounts, the Minister said a legal opinion would be sought and a decision would be taken accordingly.
OU lands leased for peanuts
Hyderabad: Osmania University’s coffers are near empty with its precious lands, which are leased to different government and quasi-government organisations, hardly contributing much to revenues.
Over 187 acres of the university’s vast lands right in the heart of the city have been leased under different lease periods.
When Education Minister K Srihari announced the lease amounts in the Legislative Council on Tuesday, all the members dropped their jaws in surprise.
“All these lease agreements were signed long back by the previous governments. The university has revised four agreements enhancing the lease amounts as per GO 571,” said Mr. Srihari.
Congress MLC M S Prabhakar appealed the government to enhance the lease amounts. The university’s financial position is in crisis and there is a need to help the university generate revenue, he said.
Generally, lands are leased to generate additional revenue to mitigate financial crisis. But in Osmania University’s case this is hardly serving any purpose, he added.