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Reshuffle ahead in education wing

The government is gearing up for a slew of crucial appointments in the education department, which were held up for the past few weeks by the panchayat elections.

The appointments will cover Calcutta University (CU), West Bengal Council for Higher Secondary (HS) Education, West Bengal Board of Primary Education, West Bengal Board of Madarsa Education, and the new universities in Barasat and Malda.

Sources said Gopa Dutta, the president of the state HS council, is likely to be appointed the vice-chancellor of Netaji Subhas Open University. The vice-chancellor’s post fell vacant last month after incumbent Surabhi Banerjee took over as head of Malda’s Gourbanga University.

HS council secretary Debashis Sarkar will be appointed either the registrar of West Bengal State University, in Barasat, or the president of the state primary education board.

The board president’s post has been lying vacant since Sulapani Bhattacharya took over as the president of Rabindra Mukta Vidyalaya Board (which offers distance education at the secondary level) last month.

The appointments at Calcutta University, however, started before the polls, with pro vice-chancellor Suranjan Das taking over as vice-chancellor from Ashis Kumar Banerjee. Officials said the university’s former dean of science, Dhrubojyoti Chattopadhyay, is likely to be the next pro vice-chancellor (academic).

CU’s controller of examinations Onkar Sadhan Adhikari is likely to be appointed the president of the state HS education council.

Adhikari is likely to be succeeded by either Debashis Biswas, the deputy controller of examinations, or Shyamal Sarkar, the secretary of the university’s undergraduate council.

“Talks are on to appoint Soharab Hossain, the president of the state madarsa education board, as vice-chancellor of the new Aliah University. There’s a proposal to appoint Maksuda Khatoon, a teacher of Howrah’s Bijoy Krishna Girls’ College, as head of the state madarsa board,” said an education department official.

Sources cited a number of reasons for the appointments, the setting up of two universities in Barasat and Malda being one.

“We had to recruit the heads of the two new universities. Besides, according to the rules, a person whose son or daughter is appearing in an exam cannot hold an important post in the examination body. There are three such officials in the HS council and at CU,” said a source.

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