Temporary appointment of principals at Kochi's Maharaja's College hits development projects

Since October 2021, the college has seen the arrival and departure of four principals and now, a government order has announced the appointment of a fifth.

Published: 11th July 2022 06:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 11th July 2022 06:30 AM   |  A+A-

Maharaja's College

Maharaja's College in Kochi (File photo| EPS)

Express News Service

KOCHI:  What does an educational institution need the most? Surely, a stable leadership in the shape of a principal is a key necessity. However, the first and only autonomous government college for arts and sciences in Kerala, the prestigious Maharaja's College in Kochi is earning a dubious distinction of being a temporary halt for special grade principals.

Since October 2021, the college has seen the arrival and departure of four principals. Now, a government order has announced the appointment of a fifth. "But if we are to count those who were given charge when the principals went on leave, the number would come to around 10. The principals who took charge and then left after a few months are Dr K Jayakumar, Dr Mathew George, Dr Mercy Joseph and Dr V Anil. The latest appointee is Dr VS Joy," said a lecturer under the condition of anonymity. 

The frequent changing of the head of the institution has adversely affected the functioning of the college, the lecturer pointed out. "Many infrastructure development projects have come to a standstill," said the lecturer. 

According to a professor, many of the principals who left have alleged that they didn't feel like continuing in the college due to frequent interference from the governing council of the college. "They said they found roadblocks at every turn when it comes to the implementation of development work," the professor said.

Some of the projects completed by spending huge sums remain useless as they haven't been commissioned. "The new hostel building was completed a year ago but is yet to be inaugurated. Meanwhile, the students are forced to spend heavily for accommodation outside the campus," said a lecturer. 

Similar is the case with the new library complex. "The only use it has is to act as a strongroom whenever there is an election," the lecturer pointed out. 

While the state government had approved Rs 6.2 crore for the renovation of the synthetic track at the Maharaja's College Stadium, the venue is yet to see even a spade. "Have you seen a college that has a dearth of toilets?" asked the lecturer.

The college has been plagued by many other issues too, with the power outage during the undergraduate and postgraduate examinations being a major embarrassment. Akhil Babu, SFI unit secretary, said the frequent change of principals has messed up everything at the college.

Meanwhile, governing council chairman N Ramakanthan refuted allegations that the high-handedness of the council is the reason why principals leave the institution.


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