NEHU VC Prof SK Srivastava
NEHU Vice-Chancellor Prof SK Srivastava. Image credit - southasiaviews.com

The Joint Action Committee (JAC), comprising associations and unions in North-Eastern Hill University (NEHU) will meet on Friday to discuss the matter related to the extension of the tenure of Vice-Chancellor Prof SK Srivastava.

The JAC will also discuss the matter of knocking the doors of Meghalaya Governor Satya Pal Malik, who is chief rector of the university, chief minister Conrad K Sangma and other ministers.

President Ram Nath Kovind, who is the visitor of NEHU, on Tuesday extended the tenure of Prof. Srivastava for a period of one year or until a fresh appointment, whichever is earlier.

The tenure of Srivastava expired on September 23, 2020, and the JAC has been opposing any move to prolong his service at the university.

JAC chairman Prof. Xavier P. Mao said the JAC has decided to meet Governor Satya Pal Malik, chief minister Sangma, his Cabinet colleagues and members from the civil societies and expose the “immoral activities” of the Vice-Chancellor.

The JAC is against the extension of the present Vice-Chancellor on the grounds that Prof. Srivastava has failed in all respects and thereby the university has been “brought down to the lowest level in all ranking assessments”.

The JAC also accused the incumbent Vice-Chancellor of being involved in financial irregularities and mismanagement of the university.

“The university had to return a Rs 48.3 crore grant as the fund wasn’t utilized due to Prof. Srivastava’s mismanagement,” Prof. Mao said, adding that the university paid a fine of Rs 22.4 crore to the Income Tax department as the taxes were not paid on time last year.

The JAC chairman also accused the Vice-Chancellor of “cheating” through cost escalation while undertaking repair works in the university.

He also claimed that the CBI is in the know of these financial irregularities and in a short time would start its probe.

“We will also approach the Lokayukta in due course of time,” the JAC chief said.

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