Kolkata : The bill to replace the West Bengal governor with the chief minister as chancellor of the state universities was passed in the assembly here on Monday afternoon. It was passed with 183 votes in favour and 40 against.
However, on Monday, a bill pertaining only to the universities under the state education department was passed. In the coming days of the monsoon session of the West Bengal assembly, similar bills for replacement of the governor with the chief minister as chancellors for universities under other departments namely health, agricultural, animal husbandry and fishery will also be passed.
The bills will be subsequently sent to the governor, Jagdeep Dhankhar for his clearance. In case the latter refuses to give approval, as already announced by the state education minister Bratya Basu, the state government will implement them by passing an ordinance.
According to Leader of Opposition in the West Bengal assembly, Adhikari the chief minister is forcefully pushing this issue to satisfy her narrow political interests. “But we will continue opposing it. I will request the governor to send the bill to the Union government since education is in the concurrent list. Just as the state government could not get the name of West Bengal changed to Bengal and also could not introduce legislative council, similarly this dream of the chief minister will never be fulfilled,” Adhikari said.
Not just the opposition parties in West Bengal, but a large section of educationists and intellectuals too have opposed this decision to replace the governor with the chief minister as state universities chancellor. Instead, they have proposed that reputed educationists be appointed as the chancellors of the universities.