Guv Arif Khan

Guv Arif Khan Acting As A Tool Of RSS, Misusing Office: Pinarayi

Guv Arif Khan

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday said that Governor Arif Mohammad Khan was acting as a tool of the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) and is misusing his powers while attempting to disrupt the functioning of universities in the state.

“Governor is misusing the Chancellor post to exercise more powers than he holds. It is undemocratic and encroachment on the powers of the Vice Chancellors. The Governor’s post is not to move against the government but to uphold the Constitution’s dignity. He’s acting as a tool of RSS,” Vijayan said today.

Vijayan’s remarks come ahead of the deadline given by Governor Khan late on Sunday for vice-chancellors of all nine universities in the state to submit their resignations.

The Chief Minister further said that Governor or chancellor doesn’t have the right to remove vice-chancellors and there is no such option in the University Act.

“Supreme Court verdict against Technology University’s vice-chancellor is not applicable to all vice-chancellors. On the basis of that verdict, the Governor cannot demand other vice-chancellors on the basis of that act. Governor or Chancellor doesn’t have the right to remove vice-chancellors. There is no such option in the University act,” he said.

As per an order issued by the Kerala Governor- Vice-Chancellors of the University of Kerala, Mahatma Gandhi University, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies, Kannur University, APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University, Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, University of Calicut and Thunachath Ezhuthachan Malayalam University have been asked to resign from their posts.

The Governor issued the order upholding the Supreme Court order which quashed the appointment of the Vice-Chancellor of APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University.

According to the PRO, Kerala Raj Bhavan, letters have been sent directing the Vice Chancellors of 9 Universities to tender their resignation by 11:30 am on October 24. The letters have been emailed to the VCs and registrars of the varsities concerned, the PRO, Kerala Raj Bhavan said.

“Upholding the verdict of Hon’ble Supreme Court in Civil Appeal Nos.7634-7635 of 2022(@ SLP(c)Nos.21108-21109 of 2021), Hon’ble Governor Shri Arif Mohammed Khan has directed Vice Chancellors of 9 varsities in Kerala to tender resignation,” Raj Bhawan said in a tweet quoting PRO of Kerala Raj Bhavan.

The Raj Bhavan said Khan also directed that the resignations reach him by 11.30 am on Monday.

This comes after the Supreme Court set aside the appointment of MS Rajasree as Vice-Chancellor of the APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University, Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala.

A bench of justices MR Shah and CT Ravikumar allowed the appeal filed by Professor Sreejith P.S. challenging the Kerala High Court order dated August 2, 2021.

The court noted that even as per Section 13(4) of the University Act, 2015, the Committee shall recommend unanimously a panel of not less than three suitable persons from amongst the eminent persons in the field of engineering sciences, which shall be placed before the Visitor/Chancellor.

As per the UGC Regulations also, the Visitor/Chancellor shall appoint the Vice Chancellor out of the panel of names recommended by the Search Committee. Therefore, when only one name was recommended and the panel of names was not recommended, the Chancellor had no option to consider the names of the other candidates, the top court observed.

At a recent event, Governor Khan while pointing out the issue of the VC appointment to various universities in Kerala said the Supreme Court itself had earlier made it clear that the appointment of the vice-chancellors was the responsibility of the Governor.

“Supreme Court has made it clear appointment of Vice Chancellor is the only responsibility of the Chancellor. The state government has no role in it,” he said. (ANI)

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