The search and selection committee for the appointment of the vice chancellor of Delhi Technological University has been disbanded, and Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena has requested that Delhi government reassemble it.
Since J P Saini, the vice chancellor of Netaji Subhas University of Technology, also serves as the vice chancellor of DTU, the position has remained empty for more than a year.
The LG is believed to have requested answers from the government on the topic after concluding that the earlier selection process had broken UGC Regulations, 2018, which were in violation. At their meeting on Friday, Saxena and the chief minister Arvind Kejriwal also discussed the issue. The secretary of the department of higher education has received the documentation pertaining to the VC’s appointment.
The department was given a three-month window to start and finish the hiring process by the previous LG in October 2021. On January 12 of last year, the LG gave its approval to the formation of the committee. The LG was given the committee’s recommendations to consider, but on July 18 of last year, he returned the file after considering the weighting given to the recommended candidates based on the criteria specified in the UGC Regulations, 2018, and certifying that they had been cleared by the vigilance department.
“It was seen that the file was transferred to CM office on July 18, 2022, and subsequently marked to hon’ble Dy. CM by the CM office on August 3, 2022,” the LG writes in the file that was returned. The proposal was sent to the department for further action on December 9, 2022, but not before it had been there for more than four months.
According to the LG, the department was unable to submit the search-cum-selection committee’s record showing the weights given to the suggested applicants based on UGC criteria. According to Regulation 7.3 (ii) of the UGC Regulations, 2018, it is required to provide such a record in writing to the university chancellor. However, no such information demonstrating that the candidates fit the requirements outlined in the UGC Regulations, properly supported by the supporting documentation, had been offered. The recommendations of the Search-cum-Selection Committee, which was established by order dated January 14, 2022, could not be implemented in the lack of such a record and information, according to the LG’s remark.
The vice-chancellor will be chosen by the chancellor from a list of three names (written in alphabetical order) recommended by the search-cum-selection committee, according to clause 3(B)(2) of the first statute of DTU, it is further stated. Therefore, the note reads, “Hon’ble Lt. Governor/Chancellor is not bound by the aid and advice of the council of ministers in this matter. The appointment of the vice-chancellor by the chancellor under clause 3(B)(2) is the discretionary function of the hon’ble Lt. Governor in his capacity as the Chancellor.”
Saxena added that the LG’s actions were in conformity with the DTU Act and the statutory authority granted to him in his capacity as chancellor.