Kerala

Varsity gives nod for appointment of K.K. Ragesh’s wife

The Syndicate of the Kannur University approved the appointment of Priya Varghese as the Associate Professor in the Malayalam department of the university. Ms. Varghese is the wife of K.K. Ragesh, a former member of parliament, who is now private secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

There was a controversy over the issue after the university chose Ms. Varghese over other qualified candidates when the rank list was prepared. The Save University Campaign Committee opposed the decision, alleging that Ms. Varghese did not have the minimum eligibility for the post, which requires a research degree with eight years of experience at the assistant professor level.

The committee had claimed that she joined as an assistant professor at Sree Kerala Varma College in 2012 and had taken three years leave for completing her PhD. The committee also claimed that as per the clause 3.9 UGC Regulation 2018 the time taken by candidates to acquire the degree shall not be considered as teaching experience for appointment to teaching position.

The Congress party cited how an experienced candidate like Joseph Skaria, with a research score of nearly 650, got 30 marks, while Ms. Varghese, with a score of close to 150, got 32 marks in the interview, to prove ‘nepotism’ in the university. The party had demanded cancellation of the rank list that was prepared just before Vice Chancellor Gopinath Ravindran‘s term was about to end. Following the controversy, the decision on the appointment was kept pending. The decision appointing Ms. Varghese has come after Mr. Ravindran has been reappointed as the Vice Chancellor with the consent of the Governor.

KSU plans legal route

Meanwhile, Kerala Students Union district president P. Mohammad Shammas said that they would challenge the appointment of Ms. Varghese in the court. He said the appointment was a favour done in exchange for the reappointment of Mr. Ravindran as the Vice Chancellor.

Mr. Ravindran was unavailable for comment.


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Printable version | Aug 11, 2022 9:59:06 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/varsity-gives-nod-for-appointment-of-kk-rageshs-wife/article65573470.ece