Students of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) rejected the proposal of extending Vice Chancellor’s tenure by another term outrightly through a referendum on Tuesday.
Over 92 per cent of the almost 2,800 votes cast were against the move. A referendum of this kind is a first in JNU’s history and was done on the appeal of several student groups— All India Students Association (AISA), National Students’ Union of India, Democratic Students’ Union and Students’ Federation of India, among others — on campus.
“Out of the 2,741 votes cast, 2,563 were against the extension and 165 were in favour of it. The strong disapproval expressed by the student community we hope will influence the authorities into dropping the proposal,” said Sucheta De, general secretary, AISA, JNU.
“The VC is not democratically elected. So we don’t want such a leader to be imposed on us for a decade,’ she added.
The present provision in the JNU Act mentions that the vice chancellor (VC) will serve a period of 5 years or till the age of 70 whichever is earlier and will be ineligible for re-appointment. Current VC BB Bhattacharya’s tenure ends in June.
The varsity has been trying to amend its Act in order to make the VC eligible for a second term. The issue was raised during the Executive Council meeting held on April 6. The EC, however, could not reach a consensus on the issue.
The of the student community has planned to communicate their decision to all the Executive Council members on their next meeting scheduled on April 27.