GUWAHATI: The Manipur University, which is a Central University, is headed to turmoil again, thanks to an order issued by vice-chancellor Adya Prasad Pandey.
Just a week after the varsity had reopened after nearly three months of protests and restlessness on the campus, Pandey banned Manipur University Teachers’ Association (MUTA) and Manipur University Staffs’ Association (MUSA) saying they are illegal organisations and the decision had to be made to maintain discipline.
Now, the university teachers and students have threatened to resume the agitation and they made known their move to Chief Minister N Biren Singh. After discussing the VC’s order at a meeting, MUTA, MUSA and Manipur University Student’s Union (MUSU) demanded that the competent authority should take appropriate action on or before September 4 against Pandey on his “ban” order.
When contacted, the CM refused to react. However, his predecessor Okram Ibobi Singh criticized Pandey’s order and wondered if he (VC) consulted the Ministry of Human Resources Development before issuing the order banning the two organisations. Ibobi asked if Pandey, who was earlier forced to go on leave for one month till August 31, received any orders to rejoin office.
Meanwhile, registrar (in-charge) Prof S Dorendrajit Singh in an order issued on Monday said Pandey’s leave period had been extended from September 1 until the completion of inquiry proceedings against him and until necessary follow up action taken on the inquiry report.
The memorandum of understanding, which saw Pandey being sent on leave, had mentioned “during the period of inquiry and until follow up action taken on the inquiry report by the competent authority, preferably within a period of 15 days, Prof AP Pandey will be on leave”.
In his order on September 1, Pandey wrote: “…The VC, in exercise of the powers conferred under Statute 3(4) of the Manipur University Act, 2005…hereby bans both MUTA and MUSA with immediate effect, and also from holding any meeting or otherwise. Accordingly the university, henceforth, prohibits activity of these bodies in the university”.
He warned that any employee of the university found indulging in the activities of MUTA and MUSA would invite disciplinary action as per service conduct rules.
Earlier, MUSU spearheaded a near three-month long agitation demanding Pandey’s ouster. In due course, MUTA and MUSA had lent their support to it. The MUSU had accused the VC of misappropriating funds among others.