Kannur varsity to move HC against Guv's stay order in appointing Priya Varghese

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan; Priya Varghese. Photos: Manorama
Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan; Priya Varghese. Photos: Manorama

Kannur: The Kannur University Syndicate on Thursday said it will move the High Court against the Governor's decision to stay the appointment of Priya Varghese at the varsity.

The Syndicate said it will approach the High Court on Friday against the stay order. The decision was taken at an emergency meeting called on Thursday.

The Governor's decision to stay the appointment without issuing a show-cause notice to the Vice Chancellor of the varsity was non-binding, the Syndicate pointed out.

Earlier, the varsity vice-chancellor Gopinath Ravindran had clarified that there were no regularities in the selection process, but this failed to satisfy Arif Mohammad Khan, the Governor.

It is alleged that Ms Varghese had the worst research score among six applicants for the post in the Malayalam department.

However, she climbed the rank list after the interview that was conducted by a committee led by the vice-chancellor. The information came to light following an RTI enquiry.

On Wednesday, using his powers as Chancellor of universities, Khan stayed the appointment of Ms Varghese on the grounds of nepotism.

Ms Varghese is the wife of KK Ragesh, who is a CPM leader and the private secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

Khan also stayed "all further proceedings pursuant to the selection procedure for appointment of associate professor in the Department of Malayalam, with immediate effect until further orders".

He invoked specific provisions in the Kannur University Act, 1996 in issuing the order.

It was also reported on Wednesday that Khan has served show-cause notices "to all stakeholders", a claim that the varsity now contests.

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