KATHMANDU, Aug 22: The oldest institution of higher education in the country, Tri-Chandra College (TC), turned 95 years old on Tuesday, and sadly it looks its age, with its magnificent building and premises needing serious repair and the whole clumsy system an overhaul.
Dirty classrooms, filthy toilets, dusty passageways, haphazardly placed furniture and cracks in the walls with loose-hanging electricity wires are some of the striking features of the college located in the heart of the city.
In addition, apart from the chronic disruption of classes due to political activity, the college does not provide clean drinking water or have sufficient toilets and canteens for over 5,000 students under seveal faculties. The sway of the student unions over matters of student admission and other decisions is no secret, but the unions allege that the management has been inept.
“We do politics for the welfare of the college and the entire nation. It can be done only by energetic and dynamic people and if TC is more active in politics it is because such people are around. The management is there to look after campus upkeep and other issues,” said Bishnu Paudel, vice-president of the Free Student Union.
Meanwhile, to the utter disappointment of students, speakers at an anniversary function ranging from renowned professors to politicians to Vice-president Paramananda Jha simply praised the college for a number of iconic veterans it has produced over the decades.
“But none of them had a single word to say about urgently needed changes to cleanliness and basic infrastructure, except for an overhead bridge,” commented Srijana Dhungana, a bachelor level Humanities student. “There is a serious problem of toilets in the college. Another problem is we have no canteen,” she added.
While the college could not add toilets and other infrastructure to keep up with the growing number of students, a well running canteen in the premises was shut down due to political dispute between student unions two years ago.
Vice-president Jha and Chundamani Sharma, chief district officer of Kathmandu, stressed the need for an overhead bridge for the campus and said they would do whatever was in their capacity to make it materialize.
Without a bridge, students have to wait to cross the road and attend classes on the other side of the campus.
At the function, the college felicitated its professors and outstanding students. Professors Dharanidhar Prasad Gautam and Karna Bahadur Basnet and college official Rabindra Man Shrestha were felicitated for their long years of service to the institution.