Calcutta, Oct. 19: Calcutta University will announce its new statutes — the guidelines for everyday functioning of the varsity — in November, after a delay of two years.
There has been status quo on all important activities related to day-to-day governance because of the authorities’ delay in framing the statutes.
The Mamata Banerjee government has twice amended the acts governing Calcutta University and other state-aided universities since 2011 with the aim of ridding higher education of politics but the corresponding revision of CU’s statutes are pending.
“We are expecting to complete the process of framing the new statues by November-end,” CU vice-chancellor Suranjan Das told The Telegraph.
The statutes detail the process of electing representatives from among teachers, students, non-teaching staff and officials to key bodies such as faculty councils, the senate and the syndicate. They also mention the procedure of constituting university boards of studies, which decide on syllabus, teaching methods and reforming the examination system.
“There is status quo in every sphere of activity of the university because of the authorities’ failure to frame the new statutes,” a CU professor said.
According to the new provisions in the CU act, last amended in 2012, the senate and the syndicate must have five elected teacher members each.
The existing syndicate and senate, the main policy-making bodies of the university, do not have a single teacher representative as elections can be held only after the statues are framed. The four-year terms of the teacher representatives on the senate and the syndicate ended in 2010.
Srutinath Praharaj, a member of the CPM-controlled West Bengal College and University Teachers’ Association, said: “Both the senate and the syndicate have been functioning without any teachers’ representative for close to three years. This should not have happened as teachers play an important role in framing the academic policies of the university.”
The delay in framing the statutes has also displeased teachers known to be close to Trinamul. One such teacher said the boards of studies for all subjects were packed with pro-Left teachers as they were formed during the Left Front regime. “The boards of studies, too, cannot be reconstituted till the new statutes are framed,” he said.
Another teacher said: “The aim of amending the university act was to depoliticise higher education. The purpose of amending the act has failed because the old boards of studies are still functioning.”
A member of the CPM-controlled Calcutta University Teachers’ Association alleged that the Trinamul government had intentionally delayed framing the statutes because “it still does not have the machinery to win varsity elections as pro-Left teachers’ lobbies dominate the universities”.