Seven ‘qualified’ for GU registrar post refuse to take the job over low salary

All efforts to get a full-time registrar by the Gujarat University (GU) have failed in the last two years. Last week, the university interviewed eight candidates who had applied in response to an advertisement for the post. While one of them was not found "qualified" as per the University Grants Commission (UGC) norms, seven others were fully qualified for the job. However, all of them, working as professors in some universities or colleges in remote areas of the state, refused to take up the job. The reason: the salary offered to them by the university is almost half of what they are getting in their present job. In-charge registrar Baldev Patel, who is also a professor and head of the microbiology department, said: "It is really impossible to find a full-time registrar under the present circumstances."

Elaborating on the issue, he said that while the university had prescribed the basic minimum qualification as per UGC norm for the post, it was offering salary as per state government norms. According to him, the candidate must possess minimum of 15 years of teaching experience and hold the post of a professor or equivalent job. "A professor or a person with such an experience is currently drawing more than Rs 1.25 lakh monthly salary, but the GU, as per state government norms, is offering a maximum of Rs 55,000 only for the registrar's posts,'' explained Patel. "That is why qualified persons are not ready to take up the assignment," he said. He said that GU was not ready to relax qualifications.

The same was the case with regard to filling up the post of the Controller of Examinations (CoE). None of the half a dozen candidates interviewed, he said, was willing to take up the job. Patel said that the university had also offered CoE and registrar's post to its own professors, with an assurance to protect their pay and other benefits, but none of them was willing to take up the job. A GU professor said that the registrar's job was "time-consuming and full of tension". There was always pressure on the registrar from various lobbies for getting various administrative works done, ranging from appointments to contracts for buildings, roads, parks, laboratories etc, involving huge money. Against it, he said, there was much freedom in teaching job and that was why no one evinced any interest in registrar's job or even CoE's job. Two professors, H C Sardar and R K Patel, who were given temporary charge of registrar in the last one year, returned to their teaching jobs.

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