Pradeep Pattanayak

The state government seems to be in a damage-control mode. After converting colleges into universities in pen and paper without appointing faculty, the state government has now asked the universities to engage contractual lecturers. 

The Higher Education department has recently written letters to all the universities barring Utkal University, Berhampur University, Madhusudan Law University, and Odia University to appoint retired professors, associate professors, and assistant professors. 

While a total of 1192 faculty posts are lying vacant at the concerned universities, no appointment has been made at Vikram Deb and Dharani Dhar Universities since the day when they were declared universities. 

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“We will engage professors, associate professors, and assistant professors temporarily to meet our requirements,” said Pratap Kumar Mohanty, OSD of Dharani Dhar University. 

Meanwhile, the 622-category lecturers association raised questions over the appointment of contractual lecturers. 

“Retired professors, associate professors, and assistant professors will be appointed on a contractual basis. There could be nothing more unfortunate. If the state government doesn’t have money for appointments, why other programmes are being conducted? It would be better for the state government to close the universities,” said Golak Nayak, president of the 622 category lecturers' association. 

When asked, the advisor of the Higher Education Department Tanmay Swain said, “As there is the Supreme Court’s stay, this is the best possible way to make sure that the studies are not hampered.”

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