The education department, government of Bihar, has directed the registrars of all the state universities to complete the appointment of assistant professors, the recommendations for which had been already sent prior to the Patna high court order.
Additional chief secretary Dipak Kunar Singh has written to the registrars that the exercise involving the appointment of 461 teachers for different subjects should be completed at the earliest.
The Patna high court had in December last year stayed the appointment of assistant professors being carried out by the Bihar State University Service Commission (BSUSC) amid the government’s failure in showing the method and manner of invoking reservations. And in February this year, it cancelled the advertisement by the BSUSC.
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BSUSC had on September 23, 2020, advertised 4,638 vacancies of assistant professors in 52 subjects just ahead of the announcement of state assembly elections. Bihar legislature passed the Bihar State University Service Commission Act, 2017 to vest the power of recruitment back in the commission, which was earlier dissolved in 2007.
Ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the Bihar government had constituted the commission with Rajvardhan Azad, chairman, University Service Commission. However, months before the interview can be processed, on July 15, 2021, several cases were filed in the high court against the appointments following which it was delayed.
So far, the recommendations for 28 subjects have been sent to the universities, with a maximum of 289 candidates in Hindi. The interview for other subjects with higher vacancies has now got stuck. Bihar universities and colleges are grappling with a huge shortage of teachers, with several departments running without any teachers or just one or two.
The Patna high court had last month observed that the advertisement issued by the commission was “not sustainable due to lack of clarity on reservation roster and backlog vacancies.”
However, it maintained that “those selections, which have already been made and concluded by the commission, shall not be disturbed.”
“If candidates from reserved category have already been selected, they shall be deemed to have filled the respective backlog posts and thereafter the posts meant for them in current vacancies. Thus, posts which remained unfilled shall be treated by the respondents as meant for Open or General category,” it added.
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In its February order, the bench headed by justice Sanjeev Prakash Sharma had directed that “backlog posts have to be mentioned separately and current posts separately in the advertisement and after that the commission shall call candidates for the posts, which are found to have not been filled from the respective category, for an interview and recommend their selections accordingly.”
Singh has cited the letter and attached the list of 461 appointments, the process for which had been concluded by the commission and recommendations sent to the universities by the department prior to the order.
For the rest of the vacancies, the court order has to be complied with.