The unanimous recommendation of the name of Dr. K. Mohammed Basheer for the post of Vice Chancellor of Calicut University raises the question of transparency in the selection procedure,according to highly placed sources.
Dr. Basheer by the committee is seen as unprecedented and unusual, as the Selection Committees constituted for the selection of Vice-Chancellors in the Universities usually submit a panel of three names of outstanding academicians to the Chancellor for final selection, upholding the spirit of fairness and transparency in the whole selection process.
However, in this case, the committee has recommended Dr. Basheer as the lone choice from among the nearly 100 aspirants for the coveted post, disregarding all conventions and precedents followed in the selection.
Dr. Mohammed Basheer, who is currently working as the Registrar of the Kerala University had the support of the Muslim League which holds the education portfolio. He was the Principal of S.S. College, Areacode , before taking up the post of Kerala varsity registrar two years ago. He has his doctorate in Arabic.
The post of CU VC has been vacant since the relinquishment of Dr. Abdul Salam on August 11, whose term was marred by various tumultuous events and agitations, leading to the setting of a police camp on the University campus. Kannur University Vice- Chancellor Dr. Khader Mangad has been acting as the interim VC of the state’s largest University since the exit of Dr. Salam.
The recommendation of the Selection Committee has been sent to the Chancellor by the Chief Secretary, who is the Convener of the Committee immediately after the conclusion of the meeting. Meanwhile, it is learnt that some complaints have been forwarded to the Chancellor alleging flaws in the proceedings and recommendation of the committee . No assent of the recommendation is reported to have been given by the chancellor.
Now, all eyes of the academic fraternity are on the Governor/Chancellor, whose stand will be keenly watched, especially against the backdrop of his pro-active roles and initiatives in refurbishing the state’s higher education sector and his insistence on academic and administrative excellence in the selection of top university officials.