The government Industrial Training Institute (ITI) in Sarai Naga village has been running from a dilapidated building as a new one cannot be constructed as a private party is the owner of the land where it is situated.
About four acres of land was allegedly handed over for the construction of the ITI over four decades ago by the family of former chief minister Harcharan Singh Brar, who was a resident of the village.
Now the family allegedly wants to shift the ITI to another plot on the Mrar Kalan road, which has far less market value than the prime land the ITI occupies on the Kotkapura-Muktsar road now, but the department of technical education is not ready for the shifting, it has been learnt.
"The ITI was started nearly over four decades ago from the land given by the family of former chief minister Harcharan Singh Brar. Though the land was donated for the construction of the ITI, yet the ownership was not transferred to its name. So, though the building is in a very bad shape, but no construction can take place on it," said an employee, working in the ITI wishing not to be quoted.
With no boundary wall, the building of the ITI looks in ruins. Set up to train rural area students in different trades, the ITI offers training in six trades to about 200 students.
"We are offering training in trades of electrician, turner, tractor mechanic, welder, copa (computer operator and programming assistant) and embroidery trades to nearly 200 students, but the building is a main problem for us," sources said.
"According to our head office, the ITI has been running from the same premises for over 40 years. We have old construction on it and if we are given the same land, there is no problem of funds and for the construction of the new building and we are able to construct the building within six months. But, as the ownership lies with the private party, no construction can take place on it with government funds," said Sham Lal Sharma, principal of the ITI.
"The proposed land is far from the main road and the department does not want to shift because it would also lead to the loss of the existing infrastructure as well as machinery too," said an employee.
"Our family had donated about 50 acres of land to the village panchayat and the government for different purposes. The village panchayat unanimously passed a resolution offering five acres of its land on the Mrar Kalan road to construct the new building of ITI on it about seven months ago.
Besides four acres for the ITI, we also offered one acre for the construction of skill development centre, its allied institute. But even after 7 months, we got no reply from the officials concerned.
The SAD government is scuttling the proposal of the land swapping due to political reasons," said Karanvir Brar, grandson of former chief minister Harcharan Singh Brar, who is also the Sarpanch of the village.
About the transfer of ownership of the present land, he said that theirs was a joint property and all the stakeholders are not ready for it." Besides, it is a very lengthy process," Karanvir added.