Notwithstanding the opposition by University of Jammu as well as University of Kashmir, the State Government has asked the J&K Public Service Commission to go ahead with the process of selection to the post of Assistant Professor as per the existing eligibility norms, thus depriving the candidates having acquired PhD degrees, prior to June 2009, from getting shortlisted for the interview.
A decision to resume the recruitment process was taken during a meeting, held under the chairmanship of Advisor to the Governor, Parvez Dewan and attended by Commissioner/Secretary, Higher Education, Sarita Chauhan; Secretary JKPSC, Shakil-ul-Rehman; Vice-Chancellor of Jammu University Prof R D Sharma and Dean Research of KU, Prof Javaid Ahmad Sheikh.
Even as Vice-Chancellor JU as well as Dean Research KU reiterated that it was the issue of eligibility of all the PhD Degree holders, who have either registered or completed the PhD before June 2009 and do not have NET qualification, the State should wait for recommendations of the Nigavekar Committee, which were expected within days, their suggestion was overruled by the Government representatives, particularly the PSC Secretary.
In support of the opinion of both the universities, Prof R D Sharma was learnt to have also conveyed that the process of selection was also not being held in many States which have been awaiting the decision on the recommendations of the Committee on eligibility issue.
However, the Secretary PSC was of the opinion that the process started by the JKPSC involves screening of a large number of candidates (more than 8500 candidates) and there are sufficient number of candidates available for the 1651 posts for which the selection process is to be conducted. The PSC was also of the opinion that the process has been held up for long and therefore, it should be now concluded as per the existing rules / norms /eligibility criteria,
The Governor’s Advisor gave an account of his two discussions with the Secretary UGC for clarification on the issue of certificates and informed that the latter had conveyed on telephone that it was not possible to mention the precise date by which Nigavekar Committee recommendations are received, examined and final decision taken on them.
“The present situation is that the Supreme Court Order of March 2015, in which it has upheld the regulations of UGC, NET/SLET/SET, is the minimum eligibility criteria and there is no further direction from the UGC on the eligibility criteria. Therefore, the present positions is to implement the existing rules and norms, notified by the UGC and conduct the selection process accordingly, sources quoted the Advisor.
Also See: PhD/M.Phil Notifications Across India
Following the Advisor’s briefing to the meeting, it was decided that the PSC would continue the process of selection to the post of Assistant Professor as per the existing eligibility norms/ recruitment rules.
It was also decided that both the varsities shall start issuing of Minimum Standard & Procedures (MSP) certificates as desired under rule 20 of UGC regulation, 2009 to all those students who have applied/apply to them for the certificates and shall complete the process by 15th of April.
Confirming the above decisions taken in the meeting, the PSC Secretary Shakeel-ur-Rehman, told Excelsior that they will now issue the selection lists after giving a final deadline to the MSPs. He said that if any candidate fails to produce MSP certificate then his candidature shall be rejected. “Furthermore, we are ready for carrying on the recruitment process,” the PSC Secretary added.
Pertinent to mention that on the request of both the universities, the process of selection for the posts of Assistant Professor in the Higher Education Department, was deferred by the JKPSC till a clarification from UGC is obtained over the eligibility of candidates who have acquired PhD degree or registered themselves prior to June 2009. In the request letter, it was suggested that the selection process should wait till the Nigavekar Committee’s recommendations are decided upon by the UGC and which is reported for early finalization.
The controversy over MSP had erupted during the course of scrutiny of application forms, when it was found that the candidates who have applied for these posts on the basis of being in possession of Ph D Degrees are, as per the Recruitment Rules governing the Service, required to submit a certificate of having acquired such degree in accordance with UGC Regulations of 2009. The certificate is required to be issued by the PhD degree awarding University.
However, Jammu University on 04-01-2016, through a notice, withdrew the MSP certificates issued by it in case of candidates who had acquired Ph D degrees prior to June, 2009. Later, the University of Kashmir also withdrew the MSP certificates with subsequent deferment of the entire selection process by the PSC.
Meanwhile, following a communication; No GS-PS/Adv(D)/2016117413719, dated 19-03-2016, from the Governor’s Secretariat, wherein it was desired that the Advisor may hold a meeting with Commissioner/Secretary, Vice Chancellors of both the Universities and PSC to resolve the issue, a meeting was held on March 30 wherein the decision was taken to resume the process.
On the other hand, sources in UGC said that Nigavekar Committee has almost finalized its report and the same is likely to be submitted to the Ministry of Human Resources Development, within a week. The committee has decided to exempt those candidates from submitting MSP certificate, who have acquired PhD degree or registered themselves for the same prior to June 2009.
News Courtesy: Daily Excelsior (DE)