Manipur University impasse | We may intervene in crisis, if not resolved soon: High Court

Manipur University impasse | We may intervene in crisis, if not resolved soon: High Court

IMPHAL, October 6, 2018

STORY HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The High Court of Manipur has said that it may interfere in the ongoing crisis at Manipur University if the authority concerned fails to resolve it.
  • The statement came following the failure of the respondents in a Public Interest Litigation, PIL, to follow the directive issued on Monday.

The High Court of Manipur has said that it may interfere in the affairs and management of the Manipur University if the authority concerned fails to resolve the ongoing crisis.

The reaction of the HC comes following the failure of the respondents in a Public Interest Litigation, PIL, to follow the directive issued on Monday.

The High Court (HC) on Monday had directed the respondents of the PILs which include Manipur government, HRD ministry and MU authority to submit their suggestions to resolve the crisis by October 5. Two separate PILs were filed by a journalist and a social activist on Monday seeking an order from the court for bringing an amicable solution over the MU crisis. While the matter was heard on Friday, the respondents failed to follow the directive of the HC.

A division bench of the HC comprising of Justice, N. Kotiswar and Justice, Kh, Nobin, heard three petitions one filed by incumbent VC of MU, AP Pandey and two separate PILs filed Hueyen Lanpao editor, Hemantakumar Ningomba and social activist, Chongtham Nimai.

While Pandey's petition challenged the MoA signed between HRD ministry, MU Community and state government, the other two PILs sought for an omnibus order for bringing an amicable solution over the MU crisis.

"We have refrained from passing any order directly interfering with the management of the university so far, in the hope and expectation that the authorities concerned, who are primarily responsible to manage the affairs would come out with certain feasible and practical solution to the problem. Unfortunately, though this court had urged the authorities concerned to submit their suggestion today, nothing is forthcoming. What we can say is that it is very unfortunate, as the authorities ought to show more sense of urgency in resolving the problem as continuing this crisis would invited more problems", said the court order.

Directing that the present crisis should not have a cascading effect on the other parts of the state, it once again ordered the respondents to either to work out a solution on their own by the next date and if not, they were asked to submit their suggestions to enable the court to issue an appropriate order in the matter.

"We feel that the prolonged disruption and crisis in the university is not in public interest. Hence, failing to resolve the crisis by the authorities concerned, we may not have other alternative but to interfere in the affairs and management of the university which we would not have done otherwise and we also hope not to", said the court. The court fixed the next hearing on October 11.

Earlier, the HC also rejected the PIL filed by the incumbent vice-chancellor of MU, Prof AP Pandey, to stay the Memorandum of Agreement signed between the HRD ministry, MU community and Manipur Government on August 16.

The signing of the MoA had brought an end to the 85 days long shutdown in the MU campus which is a result of the protest of the Manipur University Students' Union (MUSU) demanding the removal of AP Pandey. While the MUSU alleged Pandey of administrative and financial irregularities, the latter refuted the charges as baseless.

The normalcy in the MU campus was once again disrupted following a midnight raid inside the campus resulting in the arrest of over 90 students on September 20. Altogether 13 students and teachers are lodged in jail after the arrest which was an outcome of an FIR filed by the new pro-vice-chancellor.

In the aftermath of the September 20 raid, the campus once again came to a grinding halt, postponing the postgraduate examinations and also delaying declaration of semester examinations, admissions.

TNT News with inputs from Imphal Free Press

Related Stories

The Northeast Today
www.thenortheasttoday.com