NEW DELHI: Two Indian girl students were killed in a fire at a medical university…
K Mohanty,Bhubaneswar: The founder of Bhubaneswar’s SUM Hospital and Institute of Medical Sciences,
where a massive fire killed 21 people, is known as a reclusive man with strong political connections.
While four officials of the private hospital have been arrested and four other employees suspended, the clamour to arrest Manoj Nayak, who is on the run, is growing by the day.
Before he made it big in early 2000, the 56-year-old engineer was known mostly among his fraternity as a teacher in a government engineering college. Born to a school teacher father in the undivided Cuttack district, Nayak excelled in academics in school and college.
He earned a B Tech degree in electrical sciences from the National Institute of Technology (formerly REC) in Rourkela in 1982 and also holds a PhD from IIT Kharagpur in computer science.
He joined Bhubaneswar’s College of Engineering Technology (CET), as a lecturer in computer science. While still teaching at CET, he established the Siksha O Anusandhan Trust and also founded Odisha’s first private engineering college, Institute of Technical Education and Research (ITER).
At least 10 institutions including a medical college, an engineering college, dental college, biotechnology college, and nursing college among others function under the Siksha O Anusandhan University.
Nayak, however, has smartly dissociated himself from the board of management of the university preferring to work behind the scene. The official website of the Siksha O Anusandhan University does not even mention Nayak’s name.Described as a very ambitious man, Nayak had his first brush with controversy in 2000 when the authorities of the state government’s Joint Entrance Examination that conducts entrance test to engineering colleges, lodged a case of cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy against him and several others.
It was alleged that Nayak and his brother were luring students, who had secured lower ranks in the Joint Entrance Examination, to take admission in his fledgeling engineering college.The