The Punjab governor Sardar Latif Khosa has restrained the syndicate of Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University (AAU) to take any decision on controversial appointments made by the former vice chancellor at the varsity.
An official in the university administration requesting anonymity, told The Express Tribune on Monday that Khosa, who, by virtue of his portfolio as governor, is also the chancellor of the university, has sought record of the appointments from AAU Vice Chancellor (VC) Dr Azeem Malik.
The official said that the syndicate, in its meeting recently, had declared the formation of a selection board for the appointments as against rules and regulations. He suggested the notification for the board be cancelled by the VC.
Meanwhile, an inquiry report has also been submitted to the governor. The Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE), which conducted the inquiry, in its report has also termed the appointments “against the rules”, since the appointment letters were issued without the approval of the syndicate — the final authority. The VC was not available for comment. Dr Nadeem Abbasi, the president of AAU Academic Staff Association, however, said he was unaware of the development.
Earlier, the university administration, acting against the directives of the Punjab government, had appointed 129 employees for gazette and non-gazette positions.
Dr Abbasi said the candidates were given only seven days to apply for the jobs, which violates the university policy of giving three to four weeks.
Abbasi said that Dr Irfanul Haq, the then vice chancellor, formed a selection board to interview the candidates. However, on July 20, the board’s meeting was postponed after the controversy was highlighted by the academic staff and a HEC member.
The Punjab agriculture secretary then directed Dr Haq to stop the process of appointments until the irregularities were resolved. An inquiry was initiated by the ACE and a two-member committee was formed to probe the matter. Despite all of that, the administration decided to go ahead with the appointments.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 2nd, 2012.
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