KU ignores court’s order, decides to hold fresh selection board

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The Syndicate of Karachi University decided to ignore an order of the Sindh High Court (SHC) and hold a fresh selection board for the mass communication department’s teaching posts first advertised in 2014.Sources said the one-point agenda meeting decided that all candidates aspiring for the posts of lecturer and assistant professor reappear before the selection board.

Four syndicate members, however, submitted a note of dissent wherein they urged the university authorities to implement the May, 2022, SHC order under which the KU was required to make appointments in light of the majority decision of the selection board held in 2019.“This wasn’t a unanimous decision and the meeting saw a lot of heated debate on the matter. A member opposed the 2019 selection board on the grounds that the board’s members included a nominee of the secretary university, boards, Sindh, which was against the law,” a senior teacher privy to the syndicate meeting’s proceedings shared.

This concern was opposed by another member questioning as to why the same nominee was allowed to attend selection boards of other departments, he added.The dissent note, a copy of which is available. “We are of the view that the high court explicitly mentions that ‘the decision of the majority members of the selection board should be implemented in letter and spirit within 15 days strictly in accordance with law’. Thereafter, the syndicate had to approve the majority decision of the selection board.”The note is signed by Dr Mohsin Ali, Prof Haris Shoaib, Ateeq Razzak and Dr M. Hassan Khan.Sources said it’s the second time that a note of dissent had been submitted in the syndicate on the same matter.It was also pointed out during Saturday’s syndicate meeting that the three-member committee set up in the last syndicate meeting included a member whose brother was among the candidates rejected in the 2019 selection board.KU’s reluctanceThe sources said university officials wanted a new selection board to help accommodate some ‘favourite’ candidates, ignoring the SHC directives.

“The syndicate is directed to take a fresh decision in respect of the majority decision of the Selection Board within 15 days strictly in accordance with law,” the court had stated in its May 2022 order.The university contested this decision in the Supreme Court, which upheld the SHC’s order. The SC had twice directed the university to hold the syndicate’s meeting at the earliest to decide the matter.

“Despite order passed by this court on 10.11.2022 which recorded the statement of the learned counsel for the petitioner that the final decision of the syndicate will be taken within 15 days. Such a decision hasn’t been taken.“The learned counsel submits that the syndicate holds its meeting once a month and so far the meeting hasn’t been convened.

We are disappointed with such a statement of the learned counsel in view of the fact that a specific order was passed by this court that the syndicate shall finally decide the matter within 15 days,” the court order dated Dec 7, 2022, stated.