'By Nov 3': Kerala governor's show cause notice to nine V-Cs after seeking resignations
Arif Mohammad Khan's notice came even as the Kerala high court was holding a special sitting on Monday amid a row over his order to the vice-chancellors of nine universities to quit.
A day after kicking up a political storm seeking the resignation of vice-chancellors of nine varsities in Kerala, Governor Arif Mohammad Khan on Monday issued notices to the V-Cs to show cause by 5pm on or before November 3 their legal right to continue in the office.
“Notices issued to ViceChancellors concerned to show cause by 5 pm on or before Nov 3rd,their legal right to continue in office as ViceChancellors¬ to declare their appointment illegal& void ab initio,have been sent to official e mail id of VCs&Registrars (sic),” the Kerala Raj Bhavan tweeted.
Void ab initio means that a legal document, contract, agreement, or transaction is legally void from the start.
Khan's notice came even as the Kerala high court was holding a special sitting on Monday amid a row over his order to the vice-chancellors of nine universities to quit.
Upholding the recent Supreme Court order quashing the appointment of the V-C of APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University for being contrary to University Grants Commission (UGC) regulations, Khan on Sunday sought resignations of V-Cs of nine varsities in the state.
The Raj Bhavan had said Khan, as chancellor of universities in the state, also issued directions for the resignations to reach him by 11.30am on Monday.
Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan, meanwhile, hit out at the governor for the move. Vijayan said Khan has no such powers and accused him of acting against the Constitution and the essence of democracy.
The CM, in a press meeting, alleged that the governor's move was an encroachment on the powers of a democratically elected government, and the universities that are supposed to be academically independent.
"It was the governor who appointed the V-Cs of these nine universities and if these appointments were made illegally, then the primary responsibility lies with the governor himself," the Vijayan said, adding that the chancellor has no authority to seek their resignations.
The CM also claimed that the top court order on KTU V-C was based on a procedural issue and did not say anything on his academic qualification.
(With inputs from agencies)