Low representation of lower castes and Muslims in the appointment of Chancellors to Universities in the State

BENGALURU: Dominant castes have got more representation in the appointment of chancellors of universities under the state government.

A document containing the caste-wise details of the chancellors of 41 universities of the state has been submitted to the government. Lingayat, Okkaliga and Brahmin/general community have got the opportunity in large numbers. Therefore, it is known that the government has thought about providing suitable representation to the professors from the deprived community in the next appointments.

Out of the 41 universities in the state, including 32 under the Higher Education Department, four university chancellors are vacant. Out of the existing 37, there are 25 chancellors from Lingayat, Okkaliga and Brahmin/General community, 12 chancellors from all other castes of the state including Scheduled Castes. In all the four universities, before the posts of chancellors became vacant, the chancellors belonged to the same three castes.

The grassroots communities including OBCs, Scheduled Castes, Tribes and Muslims have not got adequate representation in the appointment of Chancellors. There is also a demand that these communities should get representation.

The governments coming to power are not concerned about social justice. They choose the chancellors who suit their caste and ideologies. For that, they will appoint whoever they want to the appointment committee,’ says retired Chancellor PV Venkataramaiah.

The Chief Minister will recommend to the Governor to appoint whoever he wants among the three recommended by the search committee. There is a rule in the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the Karnataka State Universities Act 2020 that the Governor should finalise the selection of the Chancellor after discussing it with the Chief Minister. The chief minister using the rule has been recommending the names of professors from their respective castes.

Caste and money are the main factors in the appointment of chancellors. Everything else is secondary. Due to this, the traditional universities are losing their dignity,’ say talented professors of the universities.

There is no place for Muslims and Christians

At present none of the Muslim and Christian communities have got the chancellor position in the state universities.

Muslim leaders have appealed to the government to give at least one seat to the community in the four vacant universities in the state.

Caste : Number of Chancellors

Lingayat : 11

Okkaliga : 07

General/Brahmin : 07

Scheduled Caste : 05

Scheduled Tribe : 01

Backward Classes : 06

Vacancies : 04

Total : 41

Courtesy: Chandrahasa Hiremalali Prajavani

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