Road material testing lab occupying space at polytechnic college

Road material testing lab occupying space at polytechnic college
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Irshad Khan

Srinagar: The Road Research and Material Testing Laboratory’-belonging to the Design Inspection and Quality Control Department (DIQCD) is housed inside the Kashmir premises of Government Polytechnic College Gogji Bagh for over two decades, which the college authorities say creates host of problems besides shrinking space for the college.
The laboratory set up in 1960s, “generates revenue for the government” by testing the construction material used by various government agencies, an official informed.
Principal KGP, Altaf Hussain Shalla told Kashmir Reader that the laboratory running inside the college premises has become a cause of concern for them.
“The higher authorities have directed not to allow even the students who are without uniform, but we have no control over people who often visit the laboratory,” Shalla said.
Besides the laboratory, Shalla said that a sizeable college space, which is used as a parking space also has occupied by the office of SE, Mechanical Division.
“We could not park our vehicles the other day as the officials there had locked the gate on their own,” he added.
Officials at the DIQCD-run laboratory, however, told Kashmir Reader that they were themselves facing space crunch and have requested the administrative department to allot permanent space to them.
“We are not staying here of our own will. We will be happy if the government provides us a permanent accommodation of our own,” an official said.
While the KGP has provided the laboratory with space, the official said that they have in turn provided drinking water to the college and kept the equipment of the laboratory available to the students for their practical work.
Rather than complaining about the laboratory occupying part of the college area he said that the administration at the institution needed to focus on the optimum utilisation of the infrastructure already available to them.
“There are several buildings unoccupied at the college. Some of them have not even been renovated after 2014 floods,” he claimed.
Chief Engineer PHE, Abdul Wahid, who is also the Chief Engineer, DIQCD said that there was no space for the laboratory to be shifted out of the college.
He, however, said that they were in communication with the KGP administration to “have the outer area of the college so that we can vacate the buildings”.
Wahid said that the laboratory at present was “part of the education” at KGP.
“Secretaries of the two departments have to take a call on this. It needs to be mutually resolved by them,” he said.