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Smriti Irani bends rules to appoint NEHU VC!

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  17 Nov 2017 12:00 AM GMT

From A Correspondent

Tura, Nov 16: An RTI has revealed a startling fact on the appointment of the Vice Chancellor (VC) of North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) with documents showing the appointment was made on the recommendation of then Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Smriti Z Irani, a movement away from established protocol.

Established laws and protocol state that it is the Visitor (President of India) is the appointing authority after the selection committee comprising of three persons - one nomited by the President and two by the Executive Council - completes the selection process. The HRD Minister is supposed to act as a postman delivering information on the entire selection process to the Visitor for his consideration on appointment of the VC without favour or recommendation.

According to the RTI, over 100 applications were received by the three-member selection committee that had Professor RP Tewari (Vice Chancellor of Dr Harisingh Gour Vishwavidyalaya Sagar), who was the visitor's nominee and convenor, WMS Pariat (Chief Secretary of the Meghalaya government) executive council nominee and Dr T Karukaran (Vice Chancellor of MG Chitrakoot Gramodaya Vishwavidyalaya), executive council nominee.

The above council, after advertisement, had completed the entire process and shortlisted five mes for consideration by the Visitor on 15th September 2015. The five mes recommended were Prof LK Jha, Prof RHD Lyngdoh, Prof D Sakthisekharan, Prof GD Sharma and Prof SK Srivastava. The mes put forward were not on the basis of merit, but on the fil selection, leaving the appointment up to the Visitor to choose.

"The Visitor has the discretion to choose any of the five or even consult the selection committee for their thoughts on the matter. This should have been done without bias and left it to the President of India," said retired faculty member of NEHU JP Jaiswal.

However, the established procedures and laws were given the short shrift by Irani, with a file noting sent by her to the President of India stating "Prof SK Srivastava may be considered".

"This shows manipulation of selection by the Minister who had no role other than to provide the recommendations of the selection committee to the President of India for consideration," added Jaiswal.

Interestingly Prof LK Jha, whose me appeared first on the list of candidates, had filed a complaint to current President Ram th Kovind in October this year, complaining that he had been overlooked despite being the first on the list and seeking a cancellation of the appointment.

NEHU has been established as a Central University in 1973. The university of late has been embroiled in controversy over sexual harassment charges against professors as well as graft while awarding of various contracts of the university.

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