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Posted at: May 16, 2018, 1:42 AM; last updated: May 16, 2018, 1:42 AM (IST)

PU VC: I stand by my affidavit in High Court

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 15

The “court on its own motion” case on Panjab University’s financial woes is turning out to be university versus the Vice-Chancellor matter. Appearing before the Punjab and Haryana High Court, Panjab University Vice-Chancellor Arun Kumar Grover said he stood by his affidavit on “governance reforms”. The university, on the other hand, moved an application for the withdrawal of VC’s affidavit.

Virtually refusing to withdraw the affidavit, Grover told the court that the university was being controlled by people who had nothing to do with it and teachers had little say in its functioning. “A university without teachers is no university at all,” he added.

Less than a month after he said only 2,000 to 3,000 votes were required to get elected to the Senate, Grover asserted total faculty votes were 796, while the teachers’ votes were just 233.

Putting things in historical perspective, the VC submitted that the university was the only one in the world to be governed by the outdated 1904 Act. He also placed before the Bench a PUTA signature campaign on reforms. Grover said the campaign was carried out way back in January 2016. But it came to his notice this month only.

Grover also submitted another affidavit spelling out the reasons for filing the previous affidavit on reforms. Among other things, Grover said he as the Vice-Chancellor was bound to bring on record all relevant facts and figures having a bearing on the issues involved. “It was in this background that he submitted the affidavit under his own signatures, instead of the Registrar, Panjab University,” he added.

Grover added the affidavit dated April 17 may, as such, be considered as his personal views in his capacity as one of the many stakeholders alluded to in the suo motu notice.

Taking on record both his affidavits, the Bench issued notice on the university’s plea for the withdrawal of the document. The counsel appearing for the State of Punjab, meanwhile, submitted that Rs 6.10 crore stood transferred to the university. Before parting with the order, the Bench asserted the matter involved public interest and was not adversarial litigation as nobody’s personal interest was involved.

‘Teachers have no say’

Virtually refusing to withdraw the affidavit, Grover told the court that the university was being controlled by people who had nothing to do with it and teachers had little say in its functioning. “A university without teachers is no university at all,” he added.  

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