Orissa to set up a committee to look after foreign students

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Bhubaneswar, Jan 24 (PTI) With aggrieved Afghanstudents set to return, the Orissa government today decided toconstitute a committee to look after the foreign students inRavenshaw University in Cuttack, official sources said.

Altogether 59 Afghan students had left Cuttackfor New Delhi on January 18 citing "lack of security" afterthey were assaulted by some local students in the universitycampus during a group clash on January 13.

Stating that the Afghan students have already boardedthe train in Delhi, Higher Education Minister Debi PrasadMishra said the committee comprising the Commissioner ofPolice, Director of Higher Education and a member of the ICCRwould look after welfare of the foreign students in thevarsity.

Mishra, who had rushed to the national capital afterthe Afghan students went there in the middle of the academicyear citing security as the reason behind their actions, saidthe students would first be lodged in the state capital hereand be provided with bus facility to attend their classes inRavenshaw University in Cuttack.

Commissioner of Police B K Sharma would look aftersecurity of the students, Mishra said. The Afghan studentsleft the varsity on January 18 after two of them were injuredin a campus clash.

If the students want to stay in Cuttack, governmentwill also make adequate arrangement for their safety, Mishrasaid. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had earlier assured thestudents that their safety would be ensured.

"The students will arrive here tomorrow," Mishra saidadding that extra classes would also be held as studentsremained absent for about a fortnight.

Mishra during his visit to Delhi had assured Afghanambassador Nangyalai Tarzi on the security of the students.

Varsity Vice-Chancellor Debdas Chhotray said theauthorities would henceforth give special attention to theforeign students.

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