Not a brick has been laid since the 60 acres were acquired to set up the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) campus here by the state government in 2014, for which the foundation stone was laid last year by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley.
The deadlock is due to the approach road to the proposed campus. Currently the approach road is from NH-1 (Amritsar-Delhi highway) side, but the IIM authorities want another one from the NH-15 side.
The classes are running from a rented accommodation, miles away from the earmarked site.
Deputy commissioner Kamaldeep Singh Sangha said, “IIM Amritsar committee has demanded another access road from NH15, but they are yet to come up with a clear plan on this. They have not responded despite reminders.” Sangha said the government was not averse to what committee wanted, but the issue needed to be discussed.
President of NGO Amritsar Vikas Manch Kulwant Singh Ankhi at a meeting with the local MP had stated that Punjab government had spent Rs 4 crore on constructing the approach road from the GT Road. A sum of Rs 15 crore released by the Centre about a year ago is lying unused, he had said. Ankhi said the second approach road issue should not hinder the construction of the institute. “The second access road to IIM Amritsar from NH-15 should be kept aside for now. The work should begin at the earliest, so that the students don’t have to study from a temporary campus and live in rented hostel,” he said.
Besides IIM Amritsar, five IIMs were announced in 2014 at Sirmour (Himachal Pradesh), Vishakhapatnam (Telangana), Bodh Gaya (Bihar), Nagpur (Maharashtra), and Sambalpur (Orissa). Except IIM Amritsar, the process for appointment of regular director at five other IIMs was completed on February 28, 2017, said Ankhi.