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Monday May 27, 2024

SC seeks provinces response to plea for regular VCs’ appointment

The CJP observed that it was true that the meetings of the syndicate had not been called for three years

By Our Correspondent
April 02, 2024
The Supreme Court SC building in Islamabad can be seen in this image. — AFP/File
The Supreme Court SC building in Islamabad can be seen in this image. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday declared as maintainable a constitutional petition regarding non-appointment of permanent vice-chancellors to the public sector universities across the country and sought details of the relevant universities from the provincial governments.

A three-member SC bench, headed by Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa, and comprising Justice Musarat Hilali and Justice Naeem Akhtar Afghan, heard the petition against non-appointment of permanent vice chancellors to the government universities.

The court, after dismissing objections of the registrar’s office, held that the matter was related to the public interest.

During the course of hearing, Umer Ejaz Gillani, counsel for the petitioner, told the court that there were no permanent vice-chancellors at more than 60 universities in the public sector. He submitted that due to the absence of permanent VCs, there were no decision-making bodies and academic councils.

The CJP asked the counsel as to who had filed the petition? Umar Gilani Advocate replied that the petition was filed by an organisation consisting of 15,000 teachers.

To a court query, the counsel informed the court that at present there are 147 universities across the country, of which 66 are in the public sector and 81 are in the private sector. “What could be the reason for not appointing vice-chancellors to universities,” the CJP asked, to which the counsel submitted that the governments are not appointing permanent vice-chancellors to influence the affairs of universities.

The counsel further submitted that every university had complete administrative structure, adding that due to lack of permanent vice chancellor, no meeting of syndicate takes place.

The CJP observed that it was true that the meetings of the syndicate had not been called for three years.

Justice Naeem Akhtar Afghan, addressing the counsel, observed that the information he provided was not correct to the extent of province of Balochistan, adding that all universities in that province had permanent vice chancellors. The judge asked the counsel to correct his information in this regard. Meanwhile, the court adjourned the hearing for date-in-office (indefinite period).