iconimg Saturday, August 01, 2015

Jasdeep Singh Malhotra
Jalandhar , January 13, 2013
In a blatant violation of the Punjab and Haryana high court ban on fresh appointments, Punjab Technical University (PTU) has issued advertisements for the appointment of coordinators and facilitators (C&F) against existing and future vacancies in various regions of the country under its distance education programme (DEP).

PTU had already appointed six such coordinators on a monthly payment of Rs. 10.5 lakh each   and that too without inviting applications from the public.

Ironically, PTU vice-chancellor Rajneesh Arora announced Drish Educational Services (DES) as coordinator for North India during the December 26 meeting of learning centres, even though the firm had been declared a non-performer as a regional centre (RC) for Chandigarh, SAS Nagar and Rupnagar. PTU did not give five-year extension to this firm as a regional centre recently.

Meanwhile, PTU registrar HS Bains, in an advertisement released in various newspapers on Sunday, stated that to improve the current delivery system of imparting education and streamlining the DEP, PTU proposed to appoint coordinators and facilitators against existing and future vacancies for various regions of the country to carry out facilitation and mentoring activities for more than 2,000 learning centres.

The applicants would be shortlisted on the basis of certain criteria, including previous experience in education training development, business promotion, mentoring of teachers, student interaction, availability of infrastructure, resumes of promoters and letter of reference from respected organisations and customers.

The advertisement said C&F applicants should highlight their capabilities in carrying out coordination and facilitation to students, learning centres, PTU and other functionaries. "Besides, they should mention capability in mentoring of teachers and counsellors to achieve the overall goals of quality education and bringing innovative ideas for imparting distance education; coordination in students' placements and marketing and communication activities in their geographic area as per laid down guidelines," said the registrar, who is also holding charge of dean (distance education).

The last date for submitting application is January 28.

"The shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews/presentation in February for further discussions. Selected candidates will enter into a financial and technical services agreement with PTU to provide designated services for three years. Based on the satisfactory performance, this agreement can be extended for one year," the advertisement said.

When contacted, Arora did not take calls, while Bains said the university was not violating the court orders in any manner. "We are appointing the companies for improving the delivery of education through the distance mode," he added.

Jalandhar-based Anti-Corruption Society president JK Anand said a contempt of court petition would be filed against the BoG (board of governors) members for appointing six coordinators and for issuing a new advertisement in this regard.