Raj HC issues notices over VC appointment

Jaipur, Nov 17: The Rajasthan High Court has issued notices to the Rajasthan University, the state government and the University Grants Commission over the appointment of current Rajasthan University (RU)  Vice Chancellor ( VC)  Jagdish Prasad Singhal, in a matter regarding his qualifications for the top post.

The division bench comprising issued notices yesterday on a PIL filed by Justice (Retd) IS Israni and three others including retired IAS Satyanarayan Singh, educationist Manakchand Khandela and former RU professor K L Sharma over Singhal’s appointment.

Rajasthan Governor Kalyan Singh had appointed Singhal, 68 as VC on the recommendations of the state government’s selection committee on July 31 this year. He has been appointed as vice chancellor for a term of 3 years or 70 years of age, whichever occurs first.

The petitioners say Singhal is not qualified for the University’s top post as per the UGC norms. The petitioners say when a Phd is required for appointing a lecturer in any college, how could the selection committee appoint somebody like Singhal as VC, who is not even a Phd but just a lecturer in an undergraduate college.

They say that Rajasthan University, which was one of the best universities in the past, should have appointed someone more qualified as per UGC norms. Or should have selected some eminent educationist/sociologist or economist with long years of research behind him.  

Other educationists say his appointment to the University’s top post was because of his political affiliations with RSS and BJP. And that his appointment has been done overlooking all required norms for the top post of University- that of being a PhD and 10 years experience as a professor.

Moreover, they claim Singhal could remain a principal of private Agarwal College for only one-and- half months as he was unable to handle the pressures of the post. He has been the dean of Business Administration department in that college. He has been the government’s representative of the Syndicate, the highest decision making body of the University.

Academicians say that except for him being the general secretary of the Akhil Bharatiya Rashtriya Shaikshik Mahasangh, a national organization affiliated with RSS, they have not heard about his contribution in the field of commerce or his vision about higher education at any platform.

The communiqué from the Governor’s House on July 31 had mentioned Singhal as Dr J P Singhal, where as he is neither a Phd nor a medicine doctor. That had created a stir too. It was alleged that the authorities had misinformed the governor on his qualification and that he had no PhD to his credit.

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