Bhanu P Lohumi
Tribune News Service
Shimla, May 16
Ignoring the surge in Covid-19 cases during the second wave, Himachal Pradesh University (HPU) has fixed interviews to recruit teachers, risking the health of applicants. The university has stated that no excuse would be entertained for not appearing in the interview.
The decision of the university has puzzled candidates as public transport has been suspended during the curfew which has now been extended in Himachal till May 26. The interviews
for over a dozen posts of assistant professor, associate professor and professor in the departments of
economics and physics
and the International Centre for Distance Education and Open Learning (ICDEOL) are scheduled from May 25 to 28.
It has been clearly mentioned in the letter sent to candidates on May 6 that “no argument or plea such as breakdown of bus or rail service, non-receipt of call letter, illness will be accepted for non-appearance in the personal interview”. Candidates said the language of the letter reeked of “insensitivity” of the authorities.
Some applicants said they were apprehensive that any exposure at this time could put their lives at risk. They also questioned the rationale behind taking hasty decisions.
A teacher said the interview should be postponed till the situation improves and the university should be sensitive in such a critical time.
The university had advertised 300 posts of teaching and non-teaching staff, out of which 125 had been filled. Notably, 15 persons have been shortlisted against one post for the upcoming interviews.
State NSUI secretary Rajat Singh Rana said, “What is the urgency that requires interviews to be conducted at a time when the government is imposing curfew and asking people to stay indoors. Teachers and non-teaching staff are working from home, transport is suspended but the HPU is adamant about holding interviews, which indicates that something is fishy,” alleged the SFI campus president of HPU Vivek Raj.
Despite several attempts, HPU Vice Chancellor Prof Sikander Kumar was not available for comment.
Applicants in a fix
- The letter sent to candidates on May 6 states, “No argument or plea like breakdown of bus or rail service, non-receipt of call letter, illness will be accepted for non-appearance in the personal interview.”
- The decision of the university has puzzled candidates as public transport has been suspended during the curfew which has now been extended in Himachal till May 26.
- Candidates said the language of the letter reeked of insensitivity of the authorities.
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