KATHMANDU, Nov 9: The twenty-two years long journey of Suresh Raj Sharma as the vice-chancellor (VC) of Kathmandu University (KU) ended with his resignation from the post which was immediately accepted by the university´s chancellor Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai at the KU senate Friday.
Right after Sharma´s resignation, the senate decided to form a three member committee to recommend a new VC. The Pro-Chancellor of the KU and Minister for Education Dinanath Sharma, Chairman of the KU Board of Trustees Daman Nath Dhungana and Prof Lok Bikram Thapa would recommend names of the candidates to the PM for appointment.
However, Dhungana said that he was not sure how long will it take for the committee to select the candidates. "We are yet to decide the date of our first meeting, let´s hope we will accomplish the task soon," he said.
Sharma, the founder VC of the KU was serving his sixth consecutive tenure since January 1. PM Bhattarai had appointed him on the basis of his seniority and competency. Sharma had two years left in his office. However, he could not be reached for comments despite several attempts.
According to the KU officials, Sharma´s recent decision to hike salary for only top officials like VC, registrar and faculty deans had generated dissatisfaction against him in the university.
"The KU professors on Thursday had submitted a memorandum to the education minister to take a bold decision against the VC," said Professor Dr Bhibhuti Ranjan Jha, chairman of KU Professors´ Association, adding," We had also informed the prime minister about the undemocratic, unjust and corrupt nature of KU administration and the decision to hike the salary of a select few including VC, registrar, deans and controller of examinations."
The confrontation among the KU VC, the KU Professors´ Association and the Student Welfare Council surfaced for the first time in March 2011 when the representatives of the Council padlocked the KU office for an indefinite time accusing Sharma of using nepotism in filling important posts in the university.
"We see his resignation as an end of autocracy in KU. We are hopeful for a brighter future of the university and students from now," responded Prof Jha.
Though Sharma in the past always admitted to the media that his relatives were employed in the university, he used to defend himself saying that all of them deserved the posts.