Chandigarh (Niel Bhalinder Singh) : The controversy surrounding the irregular removal of the Dean Student Welfare of Punjab University Emmanuel Nahar reached the High Court today. In the writ petition by Nahar which was listed before Justice Arun Monga, in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, he challenged the order of Vice Chancellor by which the charge of the post of DSW was handed over to Professor Jagat Bhushan and he was illegally removed from the post.When the matter came up for hearing today before the bench, Nahar through Senior Counsel Mr. Gurminder Singh argued that the Vice Chancellor had in complete derogation of the resolution of the Senate , passed by majority , replaced the Dean by giving charge to someone else. The appointment of the petitioner to the post was made in May 2016 and since then he is continuing on the said post.
The Syndicate in its meeting held on 28th May 2019 recommended the name of the petitioner for continuation on the said post for another year i.e. upto 31st May 2020 and the recommendation was forwarded to the Senate being the Supreme body of the University for approval. It was also resolved that the petitioner will continue the post of DSW till the decision of the Senate. The Vice Chancellor was the only one who expressed dissent on this recommendation, which was duly recorded. The matter to a dramatic turn when in the meeting of the Senate scheduled on 22.08.2019, the agenda with regard to the extension of petitioner was put up for approval, but the Vice Chancellor who was chairing the meeting, with intent to sideline the agenda for extension to Nahar as DSW, did not allow the members of the senate to vote and decide the issue.
The meeting of the Senate was not allowed to proceed as per University Regulations and the matter was not put to vote. Owing to this conduct of the VC the majority members of Senate numbering 48 passed a resolution in writing and in the post lunch session, put the same before the VC recording their approval for continuation of the petitioner till May 2020. The Vice Chancellor without taking note of the majority decision, on the same evening passed an order, wrongly citing a purported decision of the Senate, for removal of the petitioner from the post of DSW and further gave the charge of said post to one Professor Jagat Bhushan who infact was as on leave when order for handing over the charge to hiim was passed.
It was also contended by the Senior Counsel that the Vice Chancellor has usurped the power of the Senate which as per law he cannot do as the Senate is the supreme body to decide the affairs of the University, especially regarding appointment of senior officers. Considering the arguments advanced by the counsel for the petitioner and in view of the fact that the elections of the student unions in the university are going on and the post in question is of Dean Student Welfare is a an important position the Court issued the notice in the matter for Monday and the notice was accepted by the counsel for the University. It was also directed by the Court to the counsel for the University to seek instructions that how the Vice chancellor can militate the powers of the Senate. The matter is now fixed for Monday i.e. 02.09.2019.