Chennai

Varsity’s decision worries guest faculty

Anna University’s Syndicate had resolved to retrench 135 persons

A decision taken by Anna University’s Syndicate has worried the faculty and employees of constituent colleges.

Last month, the Syndicate resolved to retrench 135 persons employed in the constituent colleges as both faculty and administrative staff, without following the due process of appointment.

Over a period of time, the university had appointed these people as and when vacancies arose. Some of them were appointed as guest lecturers without following the rule of recruitment or roster. The appointees continued to function as guest faculty in their respective positions, the last decade.

On its part, the university has constituted five committees in the last decade to review the appointments and each committee has given its recommendations, all of which have remained just on paper. The appointees, fearing loss of jobs, have been filing petitions in the High Court. For the university, it has been an unending series of court cases.

The last Syndicate had taken a decision to retrench the appointees, and the affected persons have been seeking reprieve.

A senior faculty at the Anna University said that the recruitment of these people should be regularised since they had contributed to building institutions.

“During vice-chancellor Mannar Jawahar’s period, services of 98 contract lecturers in Chennai were regularised, although they were also appointed without any recruitment advertisement, selection committee or roster,” the faculty said, adding that since there was a precedent, the university could consider the same route this time as well.

Vice-chancellor M.K. Surappa said that the government would have to resolve the issue, as successive administrations had taken decisions on the appointments.

The university’s Syndicate, whose strength should be 15, presently has nine members, of whom five are bureaucrats. The five vacancies in the Syndicate have not been filled for over two years. The university’s representation is considerably weak, owing to these vacancies.

Mr. Surappa said that university representatives were sympathetic to the faculty, but the government thought otherwise. “It is beyond messy. Each day I get court notices to prevent termination of their services,” he said.

Several guest faculty members do not have the appropriate qualification, but have been teaching students. Despite these ad hoc appointments, the colleges are woefully short of teaching staff, Mr. Surappa said.

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Printable version | Jul 6, 2020 5:22:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/varsitys-decision-worries-guest-faculty/article30985863.ece

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