The Ministry of Human Resource Devlopment (MHRD) has awarded the deemed university status to the world’s first Tribal Institute – Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS).
Bhubaneswar based KISS has been declared as the deemed university under De-novo category. The institute is a sister concern of Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT). To provide impetus to research on tribal studies, the university will introduce seven new innovative departments in the first phase. And, students of KISS Deemed University will get residential education free of cost, as before.
KISS Deemed University founder Dr Achyuta Samanta said, “This became possible due to the blessings of Almighty and good wishes of the people of Odisha.” KISS Deemed University is supposed to be the first University in the world exclusively for tribal students and tribal studies, which is fully free and fully residential.
The university was started with only 125 poor tribal students by Dr Samanta in 1992-93 in a rented building in Bhubaneswar. At present, the student strength of KISS has touched 37,000 (27,000 existing students and 10,000 graduated) 60 per cent of which are girl students.
Moreover, a wide range of vocational skills are imparted to the students. In addition, KISS has been able to bring needed social changes in the tribal hinterland of Odisha and its neighbouring states by restricting the spread of Maoist and Naxalite insurgency along with United Nation’s sustainable development goals.
Interestingly, the University’s initiatives has helped tribal students to pursue range of courses and is transforming the tribal mind-set by helping them join mainstream society.