Home Solar Off Grid & Roof Tops Despite govt scheme, NU spends its own money on solar panels
Despite govt scheme, NU spends its own money on solar panels

Despite govt scheme, NU spends its own money on solar panels

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Nagpur: In another case of financial mismanagement, the Nagpur University (NU) has preferred to spend from its general funds for installing solar panels at its two buildings — exam section and Laxminarayan Institute of Technology (LIT) — even though it has the option of availing the state government scheme for renewable energy projects at all its properties.

As per its own audit report, the NU has suffered losses to the tune of crores of rupees. Its general funds, which is students’ money, too has dipped to Rs33.88 crore as on March 2018 while it was Rs54.04 crore the previous year.

On Tuesday, the NU has convened an emergent Management Council meeting to approve grant of Rs32lakh to private consultants for installing the solar panels. Since the NU has refused to avail any government scheme, the amount would be allocated from its general funds.

Management council member Vishnu Changde had been demanding the NU administration to liaise with district planning and development council (DPDC), led by guardian minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule, to avail government’s eco-friendly scheme.

During previous council meetings too, Changde had pointed out to the NU that it would save the entire cost on the green initiative for not just the two buildings but all of its properties in case it sends a proposal to the DPDC.

Vice chancellor SP Kane and acting registrar Neeraj Khaty didn’t answer to TOI’s calls and SMS.

Chandge said, “In December 2018, I had citied the example of Pune and Amravati universities during the council meeting. Since the state energy minister happens to be our district guardian minister, availing the grant would have been a hassle-free process. I had also approached the office of the minister. They had asked to send a proposal,” he said.

It is learnt that though Bawankule had asked for only a plain proposal, a reluctant NU top brass assumed it to be a detailed project report (DPR) without consulting the DPDC.

“The minister’s OSD had informed that the DPR would be prepared by the DPDC team if it was approached by the university,” Chandge said.

Currently, the NU is incurring over Rs2.5crore on meeting its power needs across three conducted colleges, 39 postgraduate departments, main administrative building, hostels, library and other offices spread at different locations.

Availing government subsidy would have not only cut its ever-growing expenditure on development projects but also drastically brought down the annual cost on powers bills for the next 25 years under the scheme.

TOI also learnt that the NU administration has been keen on working with private firm to set up the renewable energy equipment at its exam section on LIT premises. Khaty, who is director of Examinations and Evaluation, has been planning to set up panels at the section in isolation ignoring rest of the NU buildings despite holding the additional charge of registrar.

Source: timesofindia.indiatimes

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Anand Gupta Editor - EQ Int'l Media Network