Wednesday August 10, 2022

Agri varsity VC issued letter of displeasure

January 14, 2022

PESHAWAR: In a strange development, a BPS-20 administrative secretary of the provincial government has sent a letter of displeasure to a BPS-22 vice-chancellor of an autonomous public sector university with extremely derogatory language in violation of the services’ rules, traditions and misuse of authority to undermine the sanctity of the prestigious office.

The secretary was angry at the vice-chancellor for delay in holding the syndicate meeting to accord approval to the provincial cabinet decision of giving 400 kanal land from the Ameer Mohammad Khan campus, Mardan of the Agriculture University Peshawar to University of Engineering and Technology, Mardan. In his letter the Secretary Agriculture Dr Muhammad Israr used threatening tone to the vice-chancellor Agriculture University Dr Jehan Bakht.

The letter also carries serious spelling and grammatical mistakes. The News has got a copy of the letter, which is quoted as:

“You were required to call the syndicate meeting within one week as per commitment made by you in a meeting held on December 31, 2021 under the chairmanship of the undersigned where as you call the said meeting after a delay of one month period, which is highly regretted in such serious court matters. You were supposed to have got approval of syndicate members on this single point agenda through circulation, which you delaying intentionally. Your above non-serious and non-responsive attitude towards the important task/ official business compelled the undersigned to issue you a letter of displeasure with the advice to amend your behavior and take timely and prompt action in official business as well as assigned tasks otherwise the matter will be reported to the provincial government and chancellor (governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) for taking proper disciplinary action against you. Furthermore, the same will also be reflected in your performance evaluation report.” The spellings of “single” and “reflected” and the expression “you delaying” shows the state of mind in which the letter has been drafted. Also, one can see derogatory and threatening expressions repeatedly mentioned in the letter.

Reached by The News for his comments, the vice-chancellor in his belated response said that he was actually unaware of the letter.

He said: “I am still looking for the legality of this letter. I don’t know under which authority the letter has been sent to me. However, I will discuss it with legal experts and give a response to the letter.” He avoided speaking more about the matter. He didn’t want to see the matter highlighted in the media.

This correspondent sought comment from other senior officials in the administration and found that no one except the Senate of a University headed by the chancellor/governor could issue an explanation, displeasure letter or show cause notice to a vice-chancellor.

A senior official said that it was actually an insult to the office, not a person. An officer as senior as a secretary should be careful about issuance of such a letter and the language used in it, he said.

More interesting were the minutes of the meeting which caused issuance of the letter of displeasure. During the meeting held on December 31, 2021, the same secretary had shown his displeasure over “the odd attitude” of the management of the Agriculture University.

The secretary was angry at the university’s staff for moving court against the provincial government’s decision to give 400 kanals land of the Mardan campus of the university to engineering university Mardan.

It was stated that the court proceedings resorted by the staff of agriculture university were against the decision of the provincial cabinet.

In the same meeting the vice-chancellor was asked to convene the university syndicate within one week on a single point against and accord approval to the cabinet decision. The university syndicate is the sole authorised body to take decisions about lands on any public sector university, sources said.

The most important part of the meeting was that the secretary told the meeting that if the cabinet decision is not endorsed by the university syndicate in toto, the following steps would be taken.