Make fresh academic arrangements in colleges: HC to Govt

The High Court has directed the government to make fresh academic arrangements by engaging eligible candidates as Assistant Professors in government degree colleges in Kashmir division.    

Disposing a writ petition by a group of aggrieved candidates with PhD in various subjects, a bench of Justice Ali Muhammad Magrey directed the government to make within one month the fresh arrangement from the eligible candidates by adhering to its policy in letter and spirit.

According to the guidelines issued by Higher Education department on 8 February last year vide its order no. 78-HE of 2018, the Principals of the Government Degree Colleges have to issue notifications for making academic arrangements. The notice has to be issued in the first week of January in Kashmir division and in the last week of May for Jammu division every academic year.

The merit list, according to the guidelines, is to be prepared by the Nodal Principals before 15 days of the start of academic session—1st March in Kashmir division and 1st July in Jammu division.

On 30-03-2019, the government, however, issued an order extending the tenure of the candidates who were previously engaged as APs for the academic session 2018-19 beyond 30 March to 31 July 2019.

The petitioners were aggrieved of this extension.

On behalf of the aggrieved candidates, advocate G N Shaheen told the court that in keeping with the guidelines for engaging the candidates on academic arrangement basis in colleges, the nodal Principals were bound to issue advertisement notification afresh in first week of January this year.

“There is a constitutional, statutory and legal failure of the duty on part of the respondents in issuing advertisement notification in the first week of January 2019,” Shaheen said.

The candidates were aggrieved of the order of Higher Education department whereby extension was granted to the tenure of the candidates engaged for the session 2018-19 beyond March 30 to 31 July 2019.  “The extension is illegal and unlawful being in contravention of the government order,” Shaheen added.

The petitioners were seeking directions for engagement on academic arrangement basis in government degree colleges in Kashmir division in accordance with the guidelines contained in government order no. 78-HE of 2018 dated 8-2-2018.