UoM registrar pits against himself in a legal battle

Basavaraju has sought HC intervention to declare his PP

In a rare case, C Basavaraju, Registrar of the University of Mysore, has filed a writ petition in the High Court of Karnataka, where surprisingly, he will also be one of the respondents.

Basavaraju has filed the writ petition (8063/2014) in the capacity of a professor of Law with the varsity, and will be a respondent in the capacity of the Registrar. In the petition, Basavaraju has sought the intervention of the High Court of Karnataka, in declaring his ‘Probationary Period (PP)’.

It can be recalled that the appointment of Basavaraju as the Registrar, without the declaration of his PP had evoked strong reactions from sections of the academia.
The declaration of PP however, is done by the University Syndicate, for which Registrar is the Member Secretary. Even though the vice-chancellor chairs the meetings of the syndicate, Registrar is the implementing authority in issues such as creation of posts, appointments and declaration of PP period of an employee of the varsity, as per the Karnataka State Universities Act, 2000.

Therefore, the writ petition has raised a unique situation, where Basavaraju in consultation with the vice-chancellor of the varsity, will file objections and counter affidavit for the writ petition filed by him.

Appointment

Basavaraju was appointed to the University in 2007 as professor. Soon after his appointment, allegations surfaced that some of the appointments made in the year 2007, were done illegally, prompting the State government to commission a single judge bench to probe the issue.

Retired High Court judge H Rangavitalachar, who had probed the issue, had found irregularities in appointment and had recommended action against erring persons.
Following this, some of the appointed professors approached court, while declaration of Probationary Period was withheld. Basavaraju was one of the professors, whose PP was not declared.

Reacting to the issue, Vice-Chancellor K S Rangappa said, there were many professors in the varsity, whose PP was yet to be declared.

“Many have approached the court regarding the issue and several petitions have been filed. The UoM will take a decision regarding the declaration of PP shortly,” he said.

Action sought

RTI activist Sekhar S Iyer described the move by Basavaraju as a clear case of ‘conflict of interest’.

“He should either resign, or the government should relieve him of the post,” he added.

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