DU pro-VC removed from post a day after clearing Registrar’s appointment against VC’s decision
Geeta Bhatt, a member of right-wing teachers’ group National Teachers’ Democratic Front, will replace PC JoshiUpdated: Oct 22, 2020, 15:39 IST
Delhi University (DU)’s pro-vice-chancellor PC Joshi was removed from his position on Thursday a day after he cleared the appointment of a new registrar even as vice-chancellor Yogesh Tyagi had appointed another person for the job. Geeta Bhatt, a member of right-wing teachers’ group National Teachers’ Democratic Front (NDTF), will replace Joshi.
“Dr Geeta Bhatt, Director, Non- Collegiate Women’s Education Board (NCWEB) has been appointed as Pro-VC, the University of Delhi in place of Prof PC Joshi, Department of Anthropology, with immediate effect till further orders. Dr Geeta Bhatt will continue to discharge her existing responsibility in addition to this appointment. This is issued with the approval of the competent authority,” said PC Jha in a notification.
The joint registrar’s office appointed Jha as the registrar with Tyagi’s approval on Wednesday.
Joshi had been serving as in charge of the university as the pro-vice-chancellor in absence of Tyagi since June. Tyagi has been on medical leave.
Joshi did not respond to calls and texts for comment.
Jha told HT that Joshi went ahead with the university’s Executive Council meeting and appointed a new registrar even as he had been appointed the same day. “The VC [Tyagi] has decided to replace Joshi with Geeta Bhatt. I will continue to hold the position of the registrar. I will soon join...”
Earlier, on Wednesday two factions--one backed by Tyagi and another by Joshi--appointed separate people as the registrar. By the end of the day, Joshi appointed a third person to the key post.
The chaos began when the joint registrar’s office issued a notification on Wednesday morning naming Jha as the director of the university’s south campus and as interim registrar from October 21. Hours after the appointment, Joshi wrote to Jha accusing him of “illegally occupying” the registrar’s office. “In case you are not vacating the office immediately, you will be forcibly moved out of office and action initiated against you,” Joshi said in the letter to Jha.
Joshi later held the Executive Council meeting, where a resolution was passed to appoint Vikas Gupta as the registrar. Suman Kundu, who had been working as the acting registrar since September 2, presided over the meeting.
The meeting was later declared “invalid” in an unsigned email issued by the registrar’s office on Wednesday night. “A notification... was issued by the Registrar, Prof. P.C. Jha with the approval of the competent authority, for postponing the Executive Council meeting scheduled on October 21, 2020 for revision of agenda items. However, Prof. PC Joshi, Pro-Vice-Chancellor decided to go ahead and conduct the meeting of the Executive Council…. This is in complete violation of the above mentioned notification. This meeting, therefore, is illegal and void,” said the email.
On Thursday, the registrar’s office on the university’s North Campus was double-locked --one by Jha and another by Joshi’s team, said an official, requesting anonymity.
Tyagi did not respond to calls and texts.
Bhatt said she joined as the pro-vice-chancellor on Thursday.
Balaram Pani, the Dean of DU Colleges, said the university’s highest decision-making body, the Executive Council, needs to pass a resolution naming Bhatt’s as the pro-vice-chancellor as per the statutory rules. “The EC [Executive Council] has to clear each and every appointment as per DU’s rules and regulations. This is very unfortunate that a new pro-vice-chancellor has joined the office without EC’s approval. We request the Union education ministry to intervene.”