Kerala HC extends stay on Priya Varghese's controversial appointment at Kannur varsity

Priya Varghese is the wife of K K Ragesh, the private secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Friday extended the stay on the appointment of Priya Varghese as an associate professor at Kannur University til October 20.

The development came following an affidavit submitted by the University Grants Commission citing that Priya's time as a researcher cannot be considered as teaching experience.

The court was also informed that Priya does not have eight years of teaching experience, as is asked of anyone considered for the associate professor role.

The court had stayed the appointment last month after allegations that external parties had needlessly intervened to get Priya, who had the worst research score among six applicants, ahead of the other candidates to bag the role.

Priya is the wife of KK Ragesh, the private secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

Joseph Scariah, a candidate for the same post had ended up second in the final rank list despite having a research score of 651 compared to Priya's 156.

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan, who is also the Chancellor of state universities, had also stayed Priya's appointment alleging nepotism.

The court will hear Scariah's petition challenging Priya's appointment on October 20. He also demands that Priya should be removed from the ranks altogether.

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