Interestingly, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had yesterday announced that the state government would construct hostels for OBC students in 19 districts, and funds will be made available for the purpose.
"The Central government had announced a scheme to set up hostels for OBC students (boys and girls) in 2014-15. The scheme was meant to benefit the students from economically weaker background. The objective was that these students could stay in these hostels at a district place and pursue better education," the official said.
The OBC department is currently headed by the chief minister.
As per the scheme, each hostel would accommodate 100 students. The hostel would get a grant of Rs three crore.
"Of the total cost of the construction, the Centre would bear 60 per cent cost for boys hostels and 90 per cent cost for girls' hostels. In both cases, the state government is supposed to bear the rest of the expenditure," he explained.
The official blamed unavailability of land for the less number of proposals.
"Many districts in Maharashtra do not have suitable land on which the hostels would be constructed. In some cases, the available land is not suitable for setting up a hostel. Despite some reviews taken in the last four years, there was hardly any progress in finalising the land, as a result of which most of the projects got stuck," he said.
Explaining the procedure, the official said the OBC department is supposed to send proposals after receiving reports from district collectors concerned on the availability of land.
"We could sent only five proposals to the Centre. We are sure that the proposals will be cleared in near future," he said, adding that the proposals have been sent for Nagpur, Washim, Ahmednagar, Yavatmal and Buldhana districts.
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