Higher Education secretary to hold charge

On Friday, when the Vice Chancellor of the University of Kerala A. Jayakrishnan demitted office after a four-year term, the Chancellor issued orders asking the Principal Secretary, Higher Education K.M. Abraham to hold charge as Vice-Chancellor till Dr. Jayakrishnan’s successor assumes office.

Dr. Abraham is also the Acting Vice Chancellor of the Mahatma Gandhi University.

Initially, the thinking in the university and in the government was that incumbent Pro-Vice Chancellor J. Prabhash would be given charge as Vice-Chancellor when Dr. Jayakrishnan retired. A couple of Syndicate members also reportedly recommended to the Chief Minister that the Vice Chancellor of the Malayalam University and the former Chief secretary K. Jayakumar be given charge as Vice Chancellor.

“I understand that the PVC himself opted out of holding charge as the Vice Chancellor,” a member of the Syndicate told The Hindu here on Friday, “he would have waded into a lot of controversies just for a being Vice Chancellor for a couple of months.”

This is not the first time that a government secretary has held charge as Vice Chancellor of more than one university at one go. The former bureaucrats T.N. Jayachandran and D. Babu Paul too have held charge as Vice Chancellor of more than one varsity.

Meantime, in response to a request from Dr. Jayakrishnan, made earlier this month, the Chancellor is understood to have given permission to the university to hold elections to elect a representative of the Senate to the search committee to find out the next Vice Chancellor. The election process would reportedly begin next week.