University officials not mandated to take orders from the State govt says West Bengal Governor

September 03, 2023 09:37 pm | Updated 09:37 pm IST

The notification dated September 2 states that in terms of the West Bengal State Universities Acts, the Vice-Chancellor shall be principal executive officer of the Universities and all the other authorities of the Universities shall act in accordance with the directions of the respective V-Cs.

The notification dated September 2 states that in terms of the West Bengal State Universities Acts, the Vice-Chancellor shall be principal executive officer of the Universities and all the other authorities of the Universities shall act in accordance with the directions of the respective V-Cs. | Photo Credit: PTI

The notification has stoked up a fresh controversy amidst the ongoing tussle between the State government and Raj Bhawan as far as administration of State run Universities is concerned

West Bengal Governor C.V. Ananda Bose has issued a notification to all University officials of the State stating that they are not “mandated” to take orders directly from the government.

“The officers of the University are to execute the orders issued by the V-C (Vice-Chancellor) and they are not mandated to take orders directly from the government or to execute it without the knowledge and consent of the V-C,” a notification by the office of the Governor said.

The notification dated September 2 states that in terms of the West Bengal State Universities Acts, the Vice-Chancellor shall be principal executive officer of the Universities and all the other authorities of the Universities shall act in accordance with the directions of the respective V-Cs.

“The Registrars and other officers have no independent authority to function circumventing the V-Cs,” the notification said. The notification has stoked up a fresh controversy amidst the ongoing tussle between the State government and Raj Bhawan as far as administration of State-run Universities is concerned. None of the 31 State-run Universities have full term Vice-Chancellors and the Governor has appointed academicians as officiating Vice Chancellors to administer these institutions.

Earlier this week, another notification by the Raj Bhavan stated that the Governor has decided to discharge the duties of interim vice-chancellors (V-Cs) of all the varsities where full-time V-Cs are yet to be appointed.

On Saturday the Governor said that his decision to assume the role of Vice-Chancellor was only in the interest of students who were not getting certificates. The development has sparked strong reactions from the State government with State’s Education Minister Bratya Basu stating that it will take legal opinion over the Raj Bhavan’s move.

On Saturday, another Minister Dr. Shashi Panja said that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has clearly underlined that the Governor is a nominated person whereas the State government is elected by the people. “The repeated attempts by the Governor to interfere in the State’s universities is an attempt to target the Bengal’s intelligentsia,” Dr. Panja said.

Not only the State government but a section off academicians including former Vice Chancellors have criticised the manner in which the Governor has appointed “Officiating Vice-Chancellors” without holding any consultation with the State government.

The Raj Bhawan’s notification on September 2 also refers deputation and transfer of officers and stated that such transfers cannot be unilateral act by one party or any authority.

“There was a recent order issued by the Higher Education Department, Government of West Bengal, transferring on deputation the Registrar from one University to another. The concept of deputation involves a tripartite consensual agreement on the basis of a decision by the employer to lend the service of his employee… It cannot be unilateral act by one party or any authority,” the notification stated.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in

Comments

Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.