Kolkata: A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed at the Calcutta High Court on Monday challenging the decision of West Bengal Governor C.V. Ananda Bose to appoint interim vice-chancellors at 11 state universities without the concurrence of the state education department.
Ten out of eleven VCs have accepted the appointment offer from the Governor’s House. The PIL has been filed by a retired college teacher, who has appealed to make the Governor’s House and the West Bengal government parties in the petition. The matter is likely to come up for a hearing on June 12.
Already the Raj Bhavan and the state secretariat have entered into a cold war over the appointment of these 11 interim VCs. First, Education Minister Bratya Basu issued an appeal towards the newly-appointed VCs not to accept the appointment offer.
However, after 10 out of 11 VCs accepted the offer, Basu said that the education department does not approve of the appointments and also gave an indication of taking the legal route against the appointments. Now a PIL filed by a retired college teacher has added a new dimension to the entire episode.
On June 3rd, ten out of the eleven newly-appointed VCs took an “oath of commitment" from the Governor. It is learnt that as many as 15 issues were included in that oath. The main part of the commitment was that all steps to be taken by the state universities should be “student-centric" and “academic centric" avoiding political and communal involvement totally.
“Focus has also been given on the introduction of a social outreach programme for the student. Stress has been given on digital learning and research-based academics. The Governor’s House has also proposed creation of a ‘Governor’s Golden Group’ where outstanding and meritorious students from each state university would be included," a source said.