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No move to discontinue Professor Emeritus status, says JNU

The clarification came after media reports that the university had asked for the CV of historian Romila Thapar

By The Telegraph and PTI in New Delhi

  • Published 2.09.19, 4:07 PM
  • Updated 2.09.19, 4:07 PM
"We have discussed with the vice-chancellor the controversy regarding the professor emeritus status in JNU. There is no move to discontinue the professor emeritus status to anyone," HRD secretary R. Subramanyam said. Telegraph file photo

The HRD ministry on Monday clarified that there is no move by the JNU to discontinue anyone's Professor Emeritus status following media reports that the university had asked for the CV of historian Romila Thapar.

In July, the varsity's registrar wrote to professors emeritus to submit their CVs, so that they can evaluate whether they should continue in their posts.

Thapar, noted scientist R. Rajaraman, former JNU VC Asis Datta, are among the 12 emeritus professors, above the age of 75 who have received the letters. At present, there are 25 academicians holding the positions in the university.

The registrar's communication stems from a resolution of JNU's executive council on August 23, 2018, which revised the guidelines for designation as an emeritus professor.

"We have discussed with the vice-chancellor the controversy regarding the professor emeritus status in JNU. There is no move to discontinue the professor emeritus status to anyone, especially respected academicians. The university is only following the provisions of an ordinance," HRD secretary R. Subramanyam said.

The Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers' Association on Sunday called the move "politically motivated".

Soon after JNUTA statement, the university said it is following its ordinance "in letter and spirit" about the appointments. "As per the ordinance, the university is required to write to all those who have attained the age of 75 years to know their availability and willingness to continue their association with the university. Letters have been written only to those emeritus professors who fall in this category," it said.

It explained that these letters were not for discontinuation but for an informed review by the executive council, the highest statutory body of the university, and it is consistent with the practices at other reputed universities.

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