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Bengal education minister,Bratya Basu

WB governor selects interim VCs unilaterally, education minister says it is “illegal”

June 2, 2023

Mita Mukherjee

Bengal education minister,Bratya Basu said in a tweet on Wednesday that the state governor C. V. Ananda Bose has appointed interim vice-chancellors of 10 state-aided universities without consulting the government. He described the move as “illegal”.

He has asked the senior professors who have been appointed by the governor not to accept the offer.

The governor is also the chancellor of all state universities.

In the tweet, the education minister said: ” We came to know from media reports that the honourable chancellor has appointed vice-chancellors of 10 state-aided universities. The appointments were made without consulting the education department. This is contrary to the rules laid down for the appointment of vice-chancellors and this is illegal. In this unprecedented situation we, on behalf of the department, are taking legal opinions on what steps need to be taken in future. On behalf of the higher education department, we are respectfully requesting the vice- chancellors who have been appointed illegally to reject this appointment.”

The governor has appointed vice-chancellor of 11 universities including Calcutta, Jadavpur and Kalyani univetsities.

The governor decided to appoint interim VCs as selecting full-term VC through a five- member search committee is a long process and take time.

According to sources close to the governor’s office, 27 universities are running without a full-term vice-chancellor and governor in his capacity as chancellor of state universities, took the decision to appoint interim vice-chancellor to ensure normal academic and administrative activities in the institutions.

For example, Calcutta Univetsity had been running without a VC since April 19.

Education minister Bratya Basu has described the governor’s move to appoint the interim VCs as “illegal” because according to the rules the education  minister is supposed to suggest three names for filling any vacancy in VC post. The chancellor would select one of the names suggested by the minister and inform him accordingly.

The existing rules do not empower the chancellor to appoint VCs unilaterally without consulting the education department, a source in the higher education department said.

The governor in April had asked VCs of all state universities to send weekly reports to him. This was also done violating the rules. The rules do not allow VCs to communicate with the chancellor directly, the education department source said.

The governor has extended the services of those who have complied with his instruction to send him weekly reports  the source said.

Also Read: WB: Summer vacation in schools extended till June 15

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