A day after Bangalore University acting Vice-Chancellor N. Rangaswamy’s tenure of deanship expired, Governor H.R. Bhardwaj on Saturday issued a notification asking him to continue “until further orders”.
Prof. Rangaswamy was appointed acting Vice-Chancellor in November, after N. Prabhu Dev demitted office following a controversial stint.
However, critics have pointed out that the order is in violation of the Karnataka State Universities Act 2000. Section 16(2) of the Act states: “During the period when a vacancy in the office of the Vice-Chancellor remains unfilled, the senior-most Dean available in the university, as the Chancellor may appoint, shall act as Vice-Chancellor.”
If the Act is strictly followed, then the senior-most Dean, G. Mohan Kumar, should have been appointed as acting Vice-Chancellor. Professor of psychology and Science Dean, Prof. Kumar’s deanship is up to January 31, 2013.
When asked about the issue, Prof. Rangaswamy told presspersons that he did not know if there was a violation. “I am only concerned with the fact that the Governor has used his power in asking me to continue in this office,” he said.
According to sources, a section of the Syndicate petitioned the Governor to allow Prof. Rangaswamy to continue as Vice-Chancellor.
Prof. Kumar, however, feels the Governor’s action had set a wrong precedent for State universities.
“Something like this has happened for the first time in this university. It is a clear violation. Technically, I should have taken charge on Friday evening. I do not know what happened in the last minute.”