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HC seeks response on plea challenging Jamia VC's appointment

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HC seeks response on plea challenging Jamia VCs appointment
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New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday sought response from the Centre, the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), Jamia Milia Islamia and others over a plea challenging the appointment of varsity's current Vice Chancellor Najma Akhtar.

Justice A.K. Chawla issued notice on a plea filed by Jamia alumnus M. Ehtesham-ul-Haque, through his advocate Mobashshir Sarwar, and has slated the matter for hearing in February.

The plea sought the court set aside the decision related to appointment of Akhtar as JMI Vice Chancellor.

"... the entire process culminating into the impugned appointment of Dr. Najma Akhtar (Respondent No.3), is a colourable exercise of power and in flagrant violation and total non-compliance of the statutory provisions of the Jamia Millia Islamia Act, 1988," the plea said.

The petitioner told the court that Akhtar was appointed as VC despite despite the fact that the CVC had initially denied her a Vigilance Clearance Certificate.

He also told the court that the CVC urged "not to consider Najma Akhtar for any post-retirement assignment/re-employment in the organisations institutions/Universities falling within the administrative control of MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development".

"The office of Vice Chancellor of a Central University being a statutory post, all relevant factors have to be carefully considered before appointment is made; as the Search Committee failed to consider all factors, 'namely highest level of competence, integrity, morals and institutional commitment', it is liable to be set aside. The recommendation made to the Visitor in respect of Dr. Najma Akhtar (Respondent No.3), made by the Minister from amongst the panel of three names recommended by the Search Committee, is not only contrary to the Scheme envisaged by the JMI Act and the Statute for the appointment of the Vice Chancellor but also violative of the letter and spirit underlying the same," the plea said.

The petitioner said that the appointment of Akhtar was done through a tainted process and her consideration and recommendation by the purported Search Committee "subject to vigilance clearance" was in itself irregular and illegal and vitiates the entire process.

The petitioner said Akhtar's appointment was a flagrant violation, contravention and total non-compliance of the statutory provisions and regulations of Statute 2 of the Jamia Millia Islamia Act, 1988 read with clause 7.3.0 of the UGC Regulations, 2010 as amended from time to time, and thus illegal, arbitrary, void ab initio and non est in law.
 

 

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