LAW VARSITY

J&K deviates from pattern on appointment of Chancellor

JAMMU: The Jammu and Kashmir Government has deviated from the national pattern being followed for the appointment of the Chancellor in the prestigious National Law University (NLU) as it has given nod to the Bill for setting up this university in J&K without amending the controversial provision of making the Chief Minister as the Chancellor.

editorial@tribune.com

Tribune News Service

Jammu, November 14

The Jammu and Kashmir Government has deviated from the national pattern being followed for the appointment of the Chancellor in the prestigious National Law University (NLU) as it has given nod to the Bill for setting up this university in J&K without amending the controversial provision of making the Chief Minister as the Chancellor.

NN Vohra, who was the Governor of J&K when the state legislature passed the Bill for the establishment of this university in Jammu and Kashmir in February 2018, had strongly argued that the appointment of the Chief Minister as Chancellor of the NLU in J&K would lead to political interference.

He wanted to save the institution from political assault. He repeatedly stressed this point, but his successor Satya Pal Malik gave assent to the Bill on October 1.

“No amendment has been made in the Bill (for the establishment of the NLU and it has been given consent as it was passed by the state legislature,” Achal Sethi, Law Secretary, J&K, told The Tribune.

Vohra had held back the consent to the Bill for he wanted the national pattern of appointing the Chief Justice of the state concerned as the Chancellor of the university with the clearly stated rationale to save it from political assault. He had repeatedly questioned the rationale of CM being the Chancellor.

Sources said Vohra had asked, “Why not the Chief Justice of India (CJI) as in several law universities in India and if not him, why not the Chief Justice of J&K?”

He was against the appointment of a political person, in this case, CM, as the Chancellor for he had anticipated political interference in the day-to-day working of the University.

He had example of the two cluster universities, one each for Kashmir and Jammu that had CM as Chancellor and that led to heavy political interference in the affairs of the universities. These universities were announced in 2015 and till date, the infrastructure is incomplete.

Vohra did not want similar ills to plague the NLU. He had suggested that either the Chief Justice of India or the Chief Justice of J&K should be made the Chancellor.

Vohra had been consistent in seeking clarifications from the government and upheld his line of argument for the next five months till he demitted office in August last year.

The proposal owes its origin to the resolution moved by the “All India Law Ministers Conference” in mid-nineties, wherein it was resolved to set up in each state a law school modelled on the lines of the National Law School University for improving the quality of professional legal education. Since then, various states have enacted law for the establishment of the NLUs.

The J&K’s NLU will be unique in a sense as this will have the CM as its Chancellor.

NN Vohra had opposed the move 

  • NN Vohra, who was the Governor of J&K when the state legislature passed the Bill for the establishment of this university in Jammu and Kashmir in February 2018, had strongly argued that the appointment of the Chief Minister as Chancellor of the NLU in J&K would lead to political interference. 
  • He wanted to save the institution from political assault. He repeatedly stressed this point, but his successor Satya Pal Malik gave assent to the Bill on October 1.

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