A view of NEHU and (right) Vincent H Pala.

Shillong Lok Sabha MP and former Union minister Vincent H Pala has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding appointment of a new Vice Chancellor in North Eastern Hill University (NEHU).

In his letter to Prime Minister Modi, parliamentarian Pala said he had earlier written a letter to the Union education minister raising his demand for appointment of a new VC in the prestigious university of Meghalaya.

But action is yet to be taken, he said, adding, “In the meantime the sorry state of affairs of the university continue to fall downwards”.

Also read: NEHU student writes to Meghalaya Governor, seeks probe into ‘absence’ of VC Srivastava amid Covid19

Pala said the ranking of the university has “continued to scale down” from year after year.

“The NAAC report, 2017 mentioned that poor quality administration and leadership as one of the most important reasons for the university’s fall in ranking,” the letter said.

The most recent and glaring fall of the university in NIRF, 2020, NEHU stands at 49 which is a 10 place fall from the previous year, the former Union minister said.

Also read: Meghalaya teachers’ bodies ask NEHU authorities to allow CBI to probe scam at varsity

“For the last five years, the administrative performance remains poor, score on perception factor of NEHU reflected the same,” he added.

The vacant teaching posts in various departments have remained vacant till date.

In the non-filling of the vacant teaching positions, the students are at the receiving end, the letter said.

“In the interest of the thousands of students”, the parliamentarian has requested Prime Minister Modi to make a “personal intervention” and appoint a new Vice Chancellor at the “earliest possible without any further delay”.

Three organizations of Meghalaya including the teachers’ association of NEHU submitted a joint memorandum to President Ram Nath Kovind in April this year with a request to restrain NEHU Vice Chancellor Prof. SK Srivastava from ‘gross misuse and abuse of power’.

The organizations included Meghalaya Tribal Teachers’ Association (MeTTA), North-Eastern Hill University Teachers’ Association (NEHUTA), Meghalaya Confederation for Academic Welfare (MeCAW).

“The MeTTA, NEHUTA and MeCAW have submitted a joint memorandum to the President of India requesting that gross misuse and abuse of power by term expired Prof. SK Srivastava be restrained as such arbitrary acts of Prof. Srivastava constitutes gross violation of rule of law and University rules,” said a joint statement.

“In the joint memorandum addressed to the President, the three bodies sought his intervention in resolving repeated and continuous violation of all rules by Prof. SK Srivastava and his coteries in serious matters like abdication of VC’s office on January 4 and January 7, 2021 without handing over the charge and appointment of PVC as Chief Vigilance Officer by violation all rules and attempts at conducting recruitment,” the statement said.

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