Ending all speculations, Punjabi University vice chancellor Jaspal Singh on Thursday appointed senior faculty member Sukhdarshan Singh Khaira as new dean, academic affairs. Khaira will replace SS Tiwana, whose tenure is set to end on June 30.
Tiwana has already served on this post for two years. The post of dean, academic affairs, is considered second most important after the vice chancellor's.
Khaira had served as a registrar of the university from November 2007 to May 21010. He is from the department of law.
However, the university is yet to fill the posts of registrar and director, Academic Staff College. AS Chawla, who is presently holding the charge of the post of registrar, was tipped to be elevated as dean, academic. His elevation would have paved the way for a regular registrar in the university.
Khaira's appointment as dean has not only dashed the hopes of Chawla, but several other faculty members too, who were eyeing the post of registrar.
Vice chancellor Jaspal Singh said the university had called applications for the post of registrar some time back, but failed to find a suitable candidate. "We will restart that process and have a regular registrar. Till that time Chawla would continue to officiate this post."
Meanwhile, the post of director, Academic Staff College, will fall vacant on June 30 with the retirement of NK Dogra. Many senior faculty members are eyeing this post, even though Dogra is believed to be working hard to get an extension for two more years.
Some teachers' union members have gone on record saying no retired member should be given extension. "Many senior faculty members are waiting for their turn to hold the important posts. In case the vice chancellor reappoints Dogra as the director, it would demoralise the deserving candidates," said a union leader.
He said the union was not against the extension for teaching purposes, "but we won't allow the VC to appoint a retired person on any important post".
The VC said he would work as per the rules and would watch the interest of senior faculty members. "I assure them that all deserving candidates will get their due from the university," he said.