The Punjab government has failed to constitute the new board of governors (BoG) for Punjab Technical University (PTU), delaying the appointment of new vice-chancellor. The university, thus, is running on temporary, “unconstitutional” arrangements without the two authorities. Rajnish Arora continues to be in the V-C’s chair even after his second term has expired on December 23, 2014, and there’s no clarity if it is authorised.
The term of the board of governors led by industrialist and Hero MotoCorp joint managing director Sunil Kant Munjal ended on September 28, 2014. In more than three months since, the state government has failed to notify the new board.
The PTU Act requires a board to select the vice-chancellor after forming a committee for the purpose, inviting applications for the post, and sending recommendation to the government. Sources in the technical education department said “ego clash” between technical education minister Madan Mohan Mittal and Arora had delayed the making of the new board, as both had roots in the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS).
Minister's objections, names 'Changed'
Well-placed sources said the minister, who did not have cordial relations with Arora, had objected to the names the board had suggested in September and replaced a few, slowing things down. As some of the board members recommended by the technical education ministry had not make necessary remarks on the BoG-formation file, the governor’s office sent it back to the department for completing the formalities.
“The minister has changed the name of principal and a dean on the list,” said the source. Punjab governor Shivraj Patil, as chancellor of the university, will clear the file. The board has six nominated and 10 ex-officio members. The PTU registrar has also sent many reminders to the government between September 22 and October 14, 2014 that the board formation was pending.
Even as the technical education minister has maintained that Arora would continue as V-C until a replacement was found, questions are being raised over how the university will function without a board to check his functioning.
Formalities done, says Principal Secy
Reacting to the question, principal secretary for technical education Rakesh Verma said the government had completed all formalities for making the board.
"The governor’s office is likely to clear the file in two or three days,” he said, declining to say if the V-C is authorised to run the university when the government has not issued any written order to let him continue. The vice-chancellor was unavailable for comments in spite of repeated attempts to reach him.