Panjab University Teacher’s Association, which held its meeting Friday, has voiced against the postponement of senate elections, calling it a “calculated game-plan against university democracy”.
The senate polls of the Panjab University were scheduled to begin from August 24, but were postponed only days prior, on August 15.
The association, in its resolution given on the matter, has stated that while PUTA will conduct elections this year to uphold the values of democracy, the postponement of senate elections has come as a shocking news to them. “When the election process was already in motion and nomination papers for various constituencies had already been filed, with campaigning in full swing, the decision seems to be a calculated game plan of those who do not want a democratic body of governance for Panjab University,” read the resolution. The teachers’ body further alleged that the university was using the pandemic to acquire “total powers”, instead of providing necessary working conditions to deal with the crisis.
Expressing resentment at the turn of events, they said, “Forces are at work to impose on us a non-elected body of executive council.”
Reminding the authorities of the people and places that the university represents, it further stated that Panjab University being a public-funded university with over 180 colleges under it, across Punjab, “cannot be governed through a centralised, non-representative body.”
“We apprehend backlash of not only the community of teachers, but also of various stakeholders including the alumni, employees and students, against any move to abolish the senate,” the resolution read.
The body has demanded fresh dates for elections without any further delay.
Meanwhile, in the meeting, the association also expressed resentment against the UT Administration’s decision to convert PU’s International Hostel into a Covid Care Centre. The association reasoned that the hostel was situated in front of a government school and the university’s community centre, and the presence of positive patients in the hostel posed serious threat to the safety of residents living nearby. “Moreover, the university is all set to be opened in a staggered manner in the near future. Many research scholars who were residing in this hostel will face difficulty in securing safe accommodation in the city,” the resolution on the matter read.
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