West Bengal government on Monday passed the West Bengal University Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2022 in the legislative assembly in a bid to replace Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee as chancellor
The bill was passed after 182 members voted in favour of the legislation and 40 against it in the 294-member Assembly.
In the house, state education minister Bratya Basu, after introducing The West Bengal University Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2022 in said there was “nothing wrong” in chief minister taking over as the chancellor.
“Why can’t the chief minister be the chancellor of state universities if the Prime Minister is the chancellor of a central university – Visva Bharati? You can go through the recommendations of the Punchhi Commission…The governor, who is the present chancellor, has violated protocols on various occasions,” Mr Basu said.
“The governor, who is the present chancellor, has violated protocols on various occasions,” Basu said.
Earlier in January, West Bengal Governor Dhankhar alleged that Vice Chancellors of 25 state universities in Bengal were appointed without his consent.
Opposing the bill, opposition BJP alleged that appointing the chief minister as chancellor would lead to direct “political interference” in the state’s higher education system.
“The state government wants to control everything. The decision to appoint the CM as chancellor of universities is being taken to facilitate direct interference of the ruling party in the state’s education system,” BJP MLA Agnimitra Paul alleged.