Published On: Sat, Jan 7th, 2012

V S Acharya: Karnataka Govt. powerless in case of University VC’s

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Dr. V S Acharya

According to Karnataka Higher Education Minister V S Acharya, the state government had no authority to take action against erring vice chancellors referring to the case against VTU vice chancellor H Maheshappa.

Speaking to Deccan Herald he said,  “I am aware the matter is in the court. The government has no authority to take action. Only the chancellor, the governor has to act. On many occasions, we did not approve the decisions taken by Dr Prabhu Dev, Vice Chancellor of Bangalore University. But we can’t do anything. Let alone take action against a vice chancellor, we can’t ask him/her to go on leave. Anyhow, we have amended the VTU Act recently, which empowers a chancellor to take action whenever required.”

Asked whether a police case can be booked against vice chancellors in cheating cases, the minister said, “We have to explore legal options”.

Dr. H Maheshappa is accused of submitting false information to the search committee which r shortlisted the names for appointing a vice chancellor to Visvesvaraya Technical University (VTU), Belgaum. He is is alleged to have claimed in his CV that he has a first-class degree in BE while he has actually secured a second class according to an RTI query. Based on the recommendations, the governor in his capacity as the chancellor, had given concurrence for appointing Maheshappa as the vice chancellor.

When this came to light through the Right to Information Act, the Higher Education Department issued a notice seeking details of his academic records.

The vice chancellor brought a stay from the High Court against the notice on the grounds that the government had no authority to ask for such details under the VTU Act.

Later, some students moved the High Court questioning his appointment. The matter is pending before a division bench.