After numerous delays in hearing of the public interest litigation filed by a Thane-based activist,Suresh Patil-Khede,alleging that the procedure for appointment of the vice-chancellor of the University of Pune violates University Grants Commission (UGC) guidelines,the UGC finally submitted its affidavit at the Bombay HC on Thursday. The three-member selection committee has been declared illegal by the UGC.
The UoP had formed a three-member committee for shortlisting candidates for the post of the V-C. However,after five members from more than 150 candidates were shortlisted,the PIL brought the procedure to a stop.
According to Patil-Khede,the UGC guidelines specify that a person who has,in any way,been attached to the university cannot be part of the selection committee. The committee needs to have a composition of experts from the field of education. Also,a member of the selection committee has been involved with the UoP. There is a need to start the present committee from the beginning, said Patil-Khede.
On October 8,the UoP management and academic council held a joint meeting and nominated Ram Deshpande,director,Institute for Social and Economic Change (ISEC),Bangalore,for the committee. The state government nominated Sanjay Kumar,principal secretary of higher and technical education. The third member,Mukul Mudgal,retired chief justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court,was nominated by the state government and the governor. At todays meeting,the UGC stated that the selection committee was illegal. Next hearing in the case is on March 29, said Patil-Khede.