Even as the political slugfest between the government and the Governor draws out in the State, 10 Vice Chancellors have replied to the show-cause notice issued to them by Governor Arif Mohammed Khan.
All but the VC of APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University (KTU) sent their reply to the show-cause notice before the deadline ended on Monday evening. Kannur University VC Gopinath Ravindran was among the last to give their explanation.
At least three VCs are known to have sought time for a personal hearing with the Governor. These include Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit VC M.V. Narayanan, Mahatma Gandhi University VC Sabu Thomas, and Thunchath Ezhuthachan Malayalam University VC V. Anil Kumar.
The Governor is expected to go through the explanations given by the VCs and give time to those who had sought a personal hearing before taking any further action.
The earlier deadline for the VCs of eight universities to reply to the Governor’s notice was November 3 and that for VCs of Digital University and Sree Narayana Guru Open University, November 4.
The High Court extended the time granted to the VCs for replying to the show cause notice after petitions filed by them challenging the notice issued by the Governor in his capacity as Chancellor of the universities came up for hearing.
However, the court did not stay the Chancellor’s notice. The VCs had contended that the Chancellor was not legally competent to take a decision on whether the appointment of the VCs was void or not.
Late in October, the Governor had asked the VCs of 11 universities to tender their resignation after the Supreme Court annulled the appointment of M.S. Rajasree as VC of KTU. The Governor alleged a violation of UGC norms in their appointment process.
The VCs went to court challenging the communication asking them to resign, but were informed of the show cause notices. The High Court directed that the VCs could continue in service until they were removed by the Chancellor after getting their explanations to the show cause notices.