Odisha Channel Bureau
Bhubaneswar: In a significant development, the State Cabinet on Wednesday approved promulgation of an ordinance to amend the Odisha Universities Act, 1989 and to repeal the Ravenshaw University Act, 2005.
The ordinance which was approved in Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik aims at bringing all universities in the State under the Odisha Universities Act, 1989, said Chief Secretary Asit Kumar Tripathy told the media after the Cabinet meeting.
Ravenshaw University is a unitary university which was established under the Ravenshaw University Act, 2005. On the other hand, Gangadhar Meher University and Khallikote University, which were also unitary universities, were established under the Odisha Universities Act, 1989.
According to an official press brief, the Cabinet decided to repeal the Ravenshaw University Act to bring all universities under one Act. “Ravenshaw University will now come under the purview of the Odisha Universities Act, 1989 and will continue to function as usual.”
The important amendments of the Odisha Universities Act, 1989 approved by the Cabinet are:
(i) Though Senate is the highest authority of the University, over the years it has become dysfunctional. Therefore, the concept of Senate shall be done away with.
(ii) Henceforth, Syndicate shall function as the highest authority of a University. Constitution of the Syndicate will be restructured to make t more functional and professional. In the restructured Syndicate, there will be adequate representation of the Chancellor as well as the State government.
(iii) Tenure of Vice Chancellor shall be enhanced from three years to four years so that they can make some long term contribution to the University.
(iv) Upper age limit to the post of Vice Chancellor shall be enhanced from 65 years to 67 years.
(v) No Vice Chancellor shall be re-appointed as VC of the same University for the second time.
(vi) At present, the State government does not have any say in the three-member Search Committee, constituted by the Chancellor, for selection of Vice Chancellors. Therefore, an eminent academician, nominated by the State government, shall be made a member of the Search Committee in place of the nominee of the Syndicate of the University concerned.
(vii) As the concept of ‘Registered Teachers’ and Registered Graduates” have become obsolete, they shall be done away with.
(viii) To avoid collective wastage of time and resources, recruitment of teachers in the Universities shall be done centrally by Odisha Public Service Commission.
(ix) To avoid collective wastage of time and resources, recruitment of non-teaching employees in the Universities shall be done centrally by State Selection Board.
(x) The extremely difficult provision of laying voluminous annual audit reports of all the Universities in the Odisha Legislative Assembly shall be done away with. Instead, the annual reports shall be made available in the University website for at least three years for information of all concerned.