Kolkata, 29th December 2022: A notification made by the West Bengal Education Department for the appointment of permanent Vice Chancellors for six state universities may encounter legal challenges as certain appointment criteria directly conflict with the standards established by the University Grants Commission (UGC) regarding such appointments.
According to the notification that had been distributed by the registrars of the state universities, the candidates to be recommended for the post of permanent Vice Chancellors are required to have ten years of teaching experience with any university, out of which five years in the rank of professors.
Legal professionals point out that the second paragraph, which states that applicants must have five years of experience in the rank of professor, contradicts UGC standards, which clearly state that applicants must have ten years of experience at any university in the level of professor.
According to Jyoti Prakash Khan, a lawyer for the Calcutta High Court, “The Supreme Court has also stated that the UGC instructions on this matter should be rigorously adhered to. Keep in mind that education is one of the concurrent disciplines. Thus, the Central Act’s provision will take precedence if any state action in this area conflicts with it on this count.”
The Calcutta High Court is now hearing a lawsuit involving the appointment of vice-chancellors of state universities in West Bengal. On January 12, there will be another hearing concerning this case.