LAHORE – The Punjab Assembly on Wednesday passed ‘The Information Technology University of the Punjab Bill 2012’ for the second time, overruling objections of the Punjab governor regarding elimination of his role as the chancellor.

Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah moved the motion for the passage of the bill, as originally passed by the assembly, and the same was passed within no time amid Opposition uproar.

This legislation has deprived Punjab Governor Sardar Latif Khan Khosa of all his powers as the chancellor; under Section 9(1) of the Bill, Punjab chief minister has been declared as the chancellor of the university.

The governor in his observations had pleaded that the status, powers, functions and role of the chancellor in public sector universities and patron in private sector universities had been legally conferred on none other than the governor where such universities were chartered through statutory enactments.

“By no stretch of imagination, the role and responsibilities of the chancellor of a public sector university can be shifted to the chief minister of a province in view of the underlying implications of the time-honoured precedent rigidly observed, except in the case of the proposed lT University, which is an aberration to the norms not to be appeased at any cost,” the governor noted.

The governor also remarked that all the public sector universities in Punjab were autonomous bodies having full autonomy in administrative and financial matters. “There is a logic in conferring powers on the highest constitutional office of the governor as chancellor to appoint the VCs, besides setting up eligibility criteria prescribed thereof and fixing the terms and conditions of such appointment under the existing statutory provisions of the public sector universities, and that is meant to avoid the manipulation and political consideration of the government,” he maintained.

“By allowing the government to appoint and determine eligibility criteria and terms and conditions of the post of vice chancellor in Section 11 of the proposed bill, the whole structure of checks and balances shall crumble to the ground,” he noted.