Kolkata: The West Bengal government informed the Calcutta High Court on Tuesday that students’ council elections in different state universities can't be held without the appointment of permanent vice-chancellors (VCs) there. Currently, majority of the state universities are running with interim VCs appointed by Governor C.V. Ananda Bose, which has become an issue of major contention between the Raj Bhavan and the state secretariat with the latter accusing the Governor of making such appointments without the concurrence of the state education department.
On Tuesday, a PIL demanding holding of students’ council elections immediately came up for hearing before the division bench of Chief Justice T.S. Sivagnanam and Justice Hiranmay Bhattacharyya, during which the state government's counsel detailed the practical problems in conducting elections in the state universities which currently do not have any permanent VCs.
Advocate general S.N. Mukhopadhyay, appearing for the state government, argued that the issue of appointing permanent VCs is pending before the Supreme Court and till the matter is settled there and permanent VCs are appointed, students’ council elections cannot be held.
Already the apex court has ordered formation of search committees for appointing permanent VCs in different state universities. However, the disagreement between the Raj Bhavan and the state education department has persisted after the latter objected to the recommendations of the Governor as members of the search committee.