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Kerala University posting of wife of CM’s special officer kicks up row

Poornima, a Sanskrit professor with Kalady varsity, appointed Malayalam lexicon editor flouting qualification norms 

Published: 12th July 2021 05:35 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th July 2021 05:35 AM   |  A+A-

Kerala University, University of Kerala

Image of Kerala University used for representational purpose. (File Photo | EPS)

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The appointment of the wife of R Mohanan, who is serving as the officer on special duty at the chief minister’s office, in Kerala University has kicked up a row.The Save University Campaign Committee on Sunday lodged a complaint with Governor Arif Mohammed Khan that Poornima, a Sanskrit teacher with the Kalady Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, was appointed the editor of the Malayalam lexicon flouting qualification norms.

The complaint says the appointment of a Sanskrit teacher, ignoring senior Malayalam professors of the university, is against the university statute that only persons proficient in the language are eligible.Reacting to this, Kerala University Vice-Chancellor V P Mahadevan Pillai told mediapersons that the appointment was made by a selection committee comprising experts. However, the university has not clarified whether the appointment is in violation of the stipulation that only language-proficient persons can be appointed in the post.

The university’s explanation that only Poornima Mohan had applied for the post has raised suspicion, the campaign committee said. Hence, the Governor has to take the final call. Leading Malayalam scholars like Sooranad Kunjan Pillai, B C Balakrishnan and linguist P Somasekaran Nair had been the lexicon editors till date.

Malayalam professors expressed displeasure that a Sanskrit teacher with no deep knowledge of the language has been appointed in the top post of Malayalam lexicon editor, excluding the senior professors at the University of Kerala.The recruitment at an extra cost of Rs 2 lakh per month in salary also comes at a time when the university has even stopped pension revision citing financial crisis.

A post handled by leading scholars
Leading Malayalam scholars like Sooranad Kunjan Pillai, B C Balakrishnan and linguist P Somasekharan Nair had served as lexicon editors till date



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