THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The previous LDF Government’s decision to hand over the recruitment of university employees to the PSC has been met with a roadblock following the delay in framing special rules.
As of now it is the universities which are conducting recruitment based on their own tests. It was following complaints of malpractices in such recruitments that the previous LDF Government had decided to hand over the recruitment to the PSC. But the present UDF Government also included the framing of special rules in its hundred days action programme. However, it was one of the three programmes which the government had not been able to execute during the stipulated time.
The government had already started considering the university service equal to that of government service in providing pensionable benefits with retrospective effects. The delay has caused a severe staff shortage in the universities, especially in the University of Kerala.
The recent Lokayuktha recommendation to cancel the appointments of 151 assistants made during the tenure of Vice-Chancellor M K Ramachandran Nair will further vitiate the crisis. There are already over 500 clerical cadre vacancies in the universities which have forced them to entrust important tasks such as tabulation work to temporary and daily-wage employees. However, it has been pointed out that in case of malpractices being committed by the temporary staff there are no stringent rules applicable to initiate disciplinary action.
However, PSC chairman K S Radhakrishnan said that the government had to go through a long process for creating the special rules. ‘’The appointments to the three newly-constituted universities - Medical University, Fisheries University and the Veterinary University - have been faced with the hurdle, as the very Act itself has made it clear that appointment should be made only through the PSC,’’ he said. He, however, said that the government could cross over the challenge by issuing an executive order. He said as the Act prevails over the statuettes, there was no need for the universities to amend the statutes.
The absence of special rules have become a major hurdle in the PSC recruitment of employees for the Apex co-operative societies such as Kerafed, Matsyafed, Consumerfed, Textfed and Karshika Vikasana Bank.