Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan on Monday said it was by way of a “national convention” and a “national consensus” that Governors by virtue of their position hold the office of Chancellor and “not because of the sweet will of any state government.” Khan further said nepotism in university appointments cannot be allowed and that if Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was unaware of what was happening in his office, then he was “incompetent.”
Taking a dig at Vijayan, he said if the CM was not aware that someone from his office was directing the Vice-Chancellor of Kannur University to appoint a relative, “it shows how incompetent he (CM) is.” “If he (CM) knew about it, then he is equally guilty,” Khan said a day after arriving from Delhi, reported ANI.
He also rejected queries on whether a “cleansing act” was going on in the universities.
“Not a cleansing act. Universities have to be restored to their pristine glory. They have to be free from this ‘bhai-bhatijavad’, this nepotism,” Khan said.
He said his duty as Chancellor was to ensure there was no executive interference in universities and this is why Governors by virtue of their position hold the office of Chancellor.
“The Governor was Chancellor of universities even before Kerala came into existence in 1956. This is something on which a national consensus was built and a national convention evolved. Why? So that there is no executive interference in universities and their autonomy is safeguarded.