A recruitment drive to appoint around 50 professors and associate professors at the Anna University, Chennai, has fuelled a controversy. The interviews were completed this week and the selected/promoted candidates are expected to receive their appointment letters on Friday.
A section of the faculty at the premier institution have questioned the propriety of recruiting candidates when the university is in the midst of a transition “from a unitary university to an affiliating institution.” There are also objections relating to the sanctity of the process and its timing.
Originally the university had called for applications to fill nearly 100 posts of assistant professors, associate professors and professors more than one-and-a-half years ago. However, for unexplained reasons the recruitment process was not initiated.
Subsequently, around six months ago, the university reissued an advertisement asking candidates, other than those who had already applied, to submit their applications. Over the past fortnight authorities had interviewed candidates to fill up around half the vacancies for the posts of professors and associate professors alone.
Senior professors in the Anna University, however, have charged that the process was technically vitiated. “As per norms, all appointments must be ratified by the university syndicate. But for over one-year the university is functioning without a syndicate. Only an ad hoc committee is in place which does not have the power to ratify any recruitment process,” a senior professor said.
However, incumbent Vice Chancellor P Mannar Jawahar, whose extended tenure would end next week, insisted that there was no violation.