CHENNAI: THE first bench of the Madras High Court has set aside the appointment of P P Chelladurai as Vice-Chancellor of the Madurai Kamarajar University.
“We set aside the appointment on the ground that the proceedings of the search committee are flawed without expressing any opinion on eligibility and noticing Chelladurai has been dropped/deleted from the criminal case/chargesheet after further investigation,” the bench of Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and M Sundar said on Thursday.
The Governor on May 27 last appointed Chelladurai as Vice-Chancellor of the university.
Subsequently, one Lionel M Anthony Arulraj filed a PIL petition alleging that the incumbent was not at all eligible to be appointed as VC as he lacked qualification.
Chelladurai was going to make appointments to the university through illegal means, petitioner added and sought to restrain him from making any new appointments to the university. He also sought to quash Chelladurai’s appointment as the VC. Quashing the appointment, the bench ordered re-constitution of the search committee.
“The new search committee so constituted shall embark upon the process of selecting a panel of three names for appointment as VC in accordance with Madurai Kamaraj University Act, 1965 and all other applicable statutes, after due deliberations, consultations and discussions amongst themselves,” the bench added.
The court also made it clear that Chelladurai shall not be precluded from applying again and if he chose to do so, the the committee shall evaluate his candidature uninfluenced by these proceedings or anything that might have been said in this order or in the course of this proceedings. Such fresh evaluation shall be with regard to both eligibility and suitability. The entire process shall be completed within three months, the court said.
A senior government official said that they were still studying the verdict before taking a decision on going for appeal against it. Until a fresh V-C is appointed, the university’s day-to-day affairs will be managed by the university’s syndicate committee.