A govt.-appointed panel advises a separate Chancellor for each university in Kerala.

  • 0 reactions
  • 2 years ago

According to a high-level panel constituted by the Kerala Higher Education Department, each university in the state should have its own chancellor, shielding the academic institutions from disputes resulting from divergent interpretations of the federal character of the Indian Constitution. The seven-member panel, led by Shyam B. Menon, former vice-chancellor of Ambedkar University in New Delhi, found that the internal governance of Kerala’s universities had become academically counterproductive due to uninformed, excessively politicised, partisan, and external interference in their day-to-day functioning. The panel advised that internal university governance be separated from the administrative controls of the government.

“There must be a separate Chancellor for each university, elected by the Board of Regents from among themselves,” the panel said in its report submitted to the government.

The panel was established by the higher education administration in September of last year in an effort to modernise the industry, which has been judged archaic in a number of ways. All public universities should have the chief minister of the state as their visitor. In this capacity, the chief minister will be responsible for ensuring that the university’s governance complies with the broad mission entrusted to it by law. Currently, the governor serves as chancellor of the state’s public colleges. The vice-chancellor should be a distinguished academic, according to the group, and their terms should be extended to five years each. Until he or she turns 70, a second term could be considered.

“The Vice-Chancellor shall be nominated by the Board of Regents,” it added. “The Search-cum-Selection Committee should recommend a list of three individuals presented in order of preference.” The panel further proposed that the Vice Chancellor create a panel of three university professors from which the Pro Vice-Chancellor would be chosen by the Board of Regents. It stated that five fundamental concepts, including cellular academic freedom, financial independence, and internal governance, should determine the entire governing structure of universities, including both their academic and administrative sides. Separating the academic and administrative strands of governance was another suggestion made by the group.

The panel’s suggestion came months after a dispute broke out over allegations of political meddling in the operation of the universities in Kerala, a southern state, made by Governor Arif Mohammed Khan, who also serves as chancellor of institutions. Khan had sent a letter to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in December of last year, expressing his concern over political meddling in the selection of vice-chancellors of the state’s universities, pleading with him to change the university acts to allow him to become the Chancellor.

Khan had stated in a stern letter that he was prepared to sign the CM’s ordinance amending the Acts that allow the CM to become chancellor of colleges as soon as it was introduced. In response, the chief minister said Governor Khan should stay in that position because his government had no intention of taking over as Chancellor of the state’s universities. The CM had said neither the current LDF administration nor the previous LDF administration has tried to illegally interfere in the operation of the universities. This clarification came in response to the Governor’s claims of political interference in the appointment of Vice-Chancellors of the state’s universities.

Mayank Tewari


Copyright © 2024 Examgyani Technologies Private Limited. All rights reserved.