Demoted principals move KAT

The Government’s recent reversion of promotions of several engineering college principals and joint directors of technical education may hit a legal hurdle with those demoted moving court.

The Kerala Administrative Tribunal (KAT), Thiruvananthapuram, has issued notice to the Government on the alleged violation of the Kerala State and Subordinate Service Rules (KS&SSR).

Acting on a plea by College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram (CET), Principal Jiji C.V. to stay the proceedings, the tribunal sought information on the various contentions raised by the petitioner. The Higher Education Department pushed the technical education sector on the brink of a significant overhaul two weeks ago, when it issued an order to reverse the “temporary promotions” of 18 faculty members and promote 43 others as principals and joint directors with retrospective effect.

Besides Dr. Jiji, few other notable faculties who had been downgraded from the cadre of principals, included A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Technological University Vice Chancellor Rajasree M.S., Director of Technical Education Byjubai T.P., and Kerala Public Service Commission (PSC) member M.R. Baiju.

The CET Principal found fault with the manner in which the department had executed a Kerala High Court order that paved the way for the move. The court had ordered the Government to review promotions that had been sanctioned after August 5, 2008, by preparing select lists in accordance with the provisions of Rule 28(b) of Part II of KS&SSR.

“However, the provision that mandated the constitution of a departmental promotion committee chaired by a PSC member was violated. A selection committee headed by an Additional Chief Secretary reviewed the promotions in this case. Moreover, Dr. Rajasree, whose promotion was also reviewed, was oddly made member of the panel,” Dr. Jiji said.

The petitioner flagged the creation of a single select list of qualified faculty who are remunerated at different pay scales (of professor, associate professor and assistant professor) for the purpose, despite the KS&SSR requiring the preparation of three different select lists.

Raising similar contentions, more of the “maligned” principals are gearing up to seek legal recourse against the Government order.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2022 7:24:22 AM |

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