PSC defers issuing of selection list for Assistant Professors

Adil Lateef

SRINAGAR, Mar 1: After being in dilemma for nearly two months, the Public Service Commission (PSC) has deferred selection process for the posts of Assistant Professors in subjects with the controversial issue of Minimum Standards and Procedures (MSP) certificates after intervention of State Government.
JKPSC chairman, Abdul Lateef Deva, said barring five subjects in which there is no MSP issue, they have deferred the selection process for the posts of Assistant Professors. “After receiving a communication from State Government with this effect we have deferred the selection process for time being. The communication was received two to four days ago,” he told Excelsior.
Deva, however, said that they will go ahead with the publishing of selection list for subjects like Kashmiri, Dogri, Persian, Islamic studies and Electronics. “We have already started the interview process… The problems which we are facing in other subjects don’t exist in these five subjects,” he said.
The Chairman said that they withheld the selection list for five subjects including Mathematics, Physics, English, Functional English and English literature because of MSP issue.  In this regard, the JKPSC chairman said, he has been told that UGC would take a decision on the basis of recommendation of Nigvekar Committee constituted by Ministry of Human Resource Development as they are meeting either on March 8 or 9 and accordingly there might emerge a solution for the problem.
Pertinently, the Commission has been in limelight over past two months because of a controversy that erupted between the JKPSC and the two State varsities – Jammu University and the Kashmir University. The cause of the controversy was a certificate demanded by the commission from the PhD applicants who had applied to various vacancies of Assistant Professors advertised by the commission in 2013. Later, it was re-advertised in May 2014 after changes in eligibility criteria.
The latest eligibility criteria set by the PSC for the posts of Assistant Professors was that the applicant should have NET/ SET/SLET or should have a PhD in accordance to the 2009 UGC defined Minimum Standards and Procedure for award of Ph.D. Degree (MSP) and was in conformity with the UGC guidelines and the Supreme Court ruling of March 2015.
In November last year, when the commission initiated the recruitment process, it demanded a MSP certificate from the PhD applicants.  Subsequently, in December last year, the two State universities had initially issued the certificates to many applicants. However, both the universities cancelled all such issued certificates owing to some confusion. The PSC, however, proceeded with the recruitment process and conducted interviews in five subjects during early January including of those issues whose MSPs had been cancelled by the varsities.
Besides, the JKPSC extended the deadline for the submission of MSP several times for these applicants during these months and the last deadline expired on 25th of February last month.
The decision to defer the selection process has come in the back drop of repeated requests by both Kashmir and Jammu varsities to the PSC to wait till the HRD’s Nigvekar Committee submits its report. The universities have been asserting that the review committee “is very likely” to suggest a relaxation in the 2009 MSP requirements and therefore its implementation would enable all the PhD applicants a chance for selection irrespective of the nature of their PhD.
On the other side, the eligible applicants allege that the two universities are trying a face saving as they have faltered in not implementing the 2009 regulations properly in their universities. “Any change in the eligibility criteria cannot be applied retrospectively upon a recruitment process especially when interviews have been conducted in five subjects,” they said.
The applicants said more than 8500 have applied for 1651 posts of Assistant Professors and out of this only 800 are applying on the basis of only PhD. “Even among these PhDs there are only few who have MSP issues as rest of them have already submitted their certificates. We are being held hostage for a handful of applicants,” they added.


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