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September 3, 2019

High Court Censures Panjab University Vice-Chancellor and Registrar for Irresponsibility, Incompetence, and Dishonesty.

Court of Law

Chandigarh, 03 September 2019 — Punjab and Haryana High Court today censured the Vice-Chancellor and the Registrar of Panjab University Chandigarh for their irresponsible, incompetent, and dishonest conduct in the administration of the institution.

Panjab University

The Court was delivering the interim order in “Professor Emanual Nahar versus Panjab University, Chandigarh” case. The court will announce the final judgment on 16 September.

The petitioner, Professor Nahar, had contended that the Vice-Chancellor had gone against the rules to remove him from the post of Dean Student Welfare (DSW). Professor Nahar, through his counsel, had claimed that 48 senators had favored his extension during the Senate meeting before providing written information to the Vice-Chancellor.

After hearing the arguments from both sides, the Court observed that the irrefragable position emerges that the Senate is the Supreme Body of the Panjab University. The Syndicate constituted by members of the Senate follows it. The Vice-Chancellor follows the Syndicate. The Vice-Chancellor is also a member of the Syndicate as well as the Senate.

“Record produced by the University before this Court reflects that Senate resolution is merely signed by Vice-Chancellor, as a single vote. It does not bear signatures of any other member of the Senate,” the court said.

“Prima facie, it appears that the Vice-Chancellor was the only one who had expressed dissent on the continuation of the petitioner as DSW although the Syndicate had recommended his extension. The tearing haste in which the Vice-Chancellor passed the impugned order, at first flash, is indicative that the Vice-Chancellor wanted his dissent to prevail,” the Court concluded.

According to the Court, “Another redeeming factor, that weighs in favor of the petitioner, Professor Nahar, is that 15 members constitute the Syndicate, of which Vice-Chancellor is just one vote. The Syndicate recommended the petitioner’s continuation by 14 votes in his favor and only one dissenting vote, that of the Vice-Chancellor.”

“To suggest that Syndicate or Senate can not disregard recommendation or non-recommendation by the Vice-Chancellor for the post of DSW flies in the face of the reasoning the University has itself adopted,” the Court noted.

Commenting on the role of the Registrar, the Court observed, “It is incumbent for the Registrar to record the minutes of the Senate meeting/proceedings for the approval by the Chairman/Vice-Chancellor. The record produced before the Court does not contain any such minutes either draft or approved. Even otherwise, general prudence warrants the Registrar to prepare the minutes of any meeting/proceedings before passing of a resolution conveying the discussion/decision taken therein and not the vice versa. In the present case, while the resolution is on the record, the minutes to be recorded by Registrar are discernibly missing. Further, the video of the Senate proceedings is contrary to what has been produced on record by the University.”

The Court, in its order, directed Panjab University to restore status quo ante as it existed a day before the date of the meeting of Senate. Doing this allows the petitioner, Professor Nahar, to continue as Dean Student Welfare (DSW).

Further, the Court instructed the University to convene a meeting of the Senate within seven days to consider the recommendations of the Syndicate, and put the matter to vote, if need be, per the law.

Source: Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh.

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Edited & Posted by Surender Hastir | 1:15 PM | Link to this Post

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