Term of the in-office vice-chancellor of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) is coming to its end in August 2014.
And given the past trend, especially during the last selection, its time again for dirty politics, lobbying and factional agendas for the position and like always, Delhi is going to be the theatre for the silly theatrics.
Being a central university, the way to the office of the VC of BHU has to be routed through Delhi with Human Resources Development ministry and the President’s secretariat being the central points to deal with the process of selection and appointment.
And the folks have already started, pushing for their interests, in this or that power corridor, from the ministry to the President’s office. Now that a minister is in place and the HRD ministry is going to be fully functional from today, the efforts by the expecting (and the existing) players are expected to scramble for the attention and the space to gain the outreach.
The process of the selection of a BHU VC these days has become so political and lobbying based that it is compromising the academic excellence of the University.
The VC who comes with a political patronage behaves like he is a king, above all – and behaves like an authoritarian entity – we have seen it in the University – anyone can have the experience. Just see the cavalcade of the VC passing, with vehicles and a huge security apparatus – and you can find it yourself. Seeing the face of the BHU VC in public is a rare ‘spectacle’. Don’t even think of meeting him easily, like a teacher should be accessible to the students?
And the major casualty in all this has been the University, our alma mater that has seen a consistent downfall post-2000 in its academic excellence, further affecting the placement scenario and the quality of placement.
And the reason is certainly the big power that comes with big money.
With a huge budget and almost everything in VC’s hands to manipulate, the BHU VC position has become totally political.
It’s a sad story, true for every other university, but exacerbated in BHU’s case with the big flow of money to manage the affairs of this huge institutional set-up.
BHU’s annual budget is over Rs. 300 crore and last year, the Union Budget gave the University additional 100 crore. Then there are expansion projects involving big money like the huge trauma centre of the Sir Sunderlal Hospital or the so-called South Campus of the University, 80 Kms away, in the Mirzapur district, from the main campus in Varanasi.
Though not much proved yet, there have been multiple allegations of corruption. And with such big money, we cannot dismiss all the allegations.
The only saving grace in the University System has been the people in some cases who remain grounded and understand they are teachers first.
But they are very few now and certainly the people manning the BHU’s top position in the recent history have failed the vision of the Mahamana completely.
Let’s see what is in store this year.
©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/