Staff shortage: Future of Puducherry's govt law college students hangs in balance

The law college has 10 vacancies in 18 faculty member posts. Even the post of principal has been vacant for nearly a decade now with the senior-most faculty member filling the gap.

Published: 26th February 2022 10:09 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th February 2022 10:09 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

PUDUCHERRY: The future of students of the Dr BR Ambedkar Government Law College here hangs in the balance as Pondicherry University warned the college of withdrawing affiliation, unless shortages in staff are addressed.

The law college has 10 vacancies in 18 faculty member posts. Even the post of principal has been vacant for nearly a decade now with the senior-most faculty member filling the gap. This leaves only seven other faculty members to take classes. 

The college had enrolled 37 students in the three-year law course and 30 students in the 5 year integrated course. On February 9, PU sent a letter to the law college principal, that it would not recognise the first year admission to both courses, unless its conditions are complied with.

The long-standing demand of students to fill the vacant posts of faculty has remained unfilled .    In response to a public interest litigation (PIL), the Madras High Court issued an order recently directing the UT government to fill the vacancies. The PU, too, directed the law college's principal to fill the vacant posts before admission of students. But, the Puducherry government has not taken any action to fill the posts. The students recently submitted a memorandum to Minister N Rangasamy on the matter.

With Puducherry being an UT, the posts of faculty (Group A posts) can be filled only through the UPSC, as Puducherry does not have its own Public service Commission. But, recruitment through UPSC could take up to several months.

Expressing concern over the students' fate, Leader of Opposition and DMK MLA R Siva urged the Lt Governor Tamilisai Soundarrajan and the CM to intervene. The government must fill the vacancies and provide basic amenities, including library and bus facilities, so that the education of students is not affected, he said .

Meanwhile, Minister for Education A Namassivayam, after holding talks with the students, said that the government is taking steps to address their issues. A proposal was moved to the government for engaging faculty on a short-term contract basis till regular recruitment is made through UPSC, Director of Education PT Rudra Goud told TNIE. Once approved, the government will notify for short-term contact. The government has also replied to PU on fulfilling its conditions, he said.

However, Siva claimed government authorities refused to accept short-term recruitment and seem to be adamant that it be filled through UPSC. As a result, students who enrolled this year are at the risk of not being able to study. If the law studies are discontinued this year, the college could be closed altogether , he said.

  The law college was established in 1972 and its alumni include judges in the High Court and lower courts. Similarly, the CM and Minister of Law K Lakshminarayanan have been students of the college.



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