Wednesday December 08, 2021

KP academicians concerned over appointment process of VCs

September 21, 2021

PESHAWAR: Senior academicians have expressed concern over the procedure of appointment of vice-chancellors for different public sector universities in KP and levelled allegations of favouritism against the search committee for the purpose, especially its head Dr Attaur Rahman.

“The entire procedure is flawed. This is the reason we see incompetent, inefficient and even ineligible people appointed as vice-chancellors and several of them have been sent on forced leave only months after taking charge of the prized positions,” said a senior academician, wishing anonymity.

During recent years, it has been observed that most of the vice-chancellors appointed to different universities proved to be so incompetent that several of them were sent on forced leave before completion of their tenures.

The academicians have pointed the finger at the Higher Education Department as well as the search committee for doing personal likes and dislikes during scrutiny. One senior professor opined that the candidates of social sciences, especially political science and international relations, were not considered at all despite meeting the required criteria and having long teaching and administrative experiences.

“You see, the majority of the vice-chancellors in the 30 universities of the province are from natural and applied sciences. The candidates from social sciences are dropped even at the scrutiny stage,” the professor said.

He accused the head of the academic and search committee of committing favouritism to accommodate his own students. Another professor said that the professors from natural sciences could be good researchers but they have never been proved as good administrators. And this is the reason that the situation in many universities under them have deteriorated and not improved.

A senior official in the KP government pointed the finger at the recruitment process for the appointment of vice-chancellors, as he himself has remained part of the process.

He said the search committee should conduct a search for the most suitable candidates because, according to him, very few among applicants for the prestigious positions deserved to be appointed.

One senior professor argued that the entire committee was composed of people from other provinces and they didn’t know the professors belonging to this province and their capacities and capabilities.

Also, the committee holds its meetings and interviews for the appointment of vice-chancellors in Islamabad, which not only causes heavy expenses but also the entire Higher Education Department is moved to the federal capital for several days. The candidates also have to travel to Islamabad for the interview, he said. The academicians demanded the government to take notice of issues related to the academic and search committee and reconstitute the committee.