• Friday, Oct 23, 2020
  • Last Update : 02:00 pm

DU VC defends holding DU Senate session without top officials

  • Published at 08:32 am June 15th, 2020
File photo of Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Building on Dhaka UniversityMahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

However, the annual budget for the university, which is traditionally announced on the final senate session of a fiscal year, was not placed this time

Dhaka University Vice Chancellor Prof Md Akhtaruzzaman has said the university’s recent Senate meeting was held as per rules and regulations.

“Every senate member can have their own opinion. The senate session was held following the rules and regulations,” Prof Md Akhtaruzzaman told Dhaka Tribune on Monday. 

On Sunday, DU held its annual Senate session without the presence of its top officials amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Among those who chose not to participate in the meeting, including some senate members, two pro-vice chancellors (VC), and the treasurer of the university, claimed that the DU VC held this meeting to serve his own agenda.

Akhtaruzzaman, in the session, nominated three candidates of “his preference” from the Senate to the Syndicate, they alleged.

Prof Shibli Rubayat Ul Islam, chairman of Bangladesh Security Exchange Commission and also the former dean of the university’s business studies department, was nominated by Senate (after internal voting) as a Syndicate member under the educationist quota. 

Moreover, Bahalul Majnun Chunnu, a former general secretary of Chhatra League, was nominated as a Syndicate member under the registered graduate category and former Bangla Academy director general Shamshuzzaman Khan was nominated under the eminent citizen category.

“These three new Syndicate members, including me, were re-nominated by the Dhaka University Senate after two years’ completion," said Prof Shibli. 

However, the annual budget for the university, which is traditionally announced on the final senate session of a fiscal year, was not placed this time, and the senate session was adjourned instead till July 23.

Meanwhile, both the pro-VCs and deans of two faculties wrote to the DU VC stating their inability to join the session, terming the session without budget being placed as unimportant.

Rejecting all the claims raised by DU senators, DU VC Prof Akhtaruzzaman earlier on Saturday said this allegation creates confusion and those who are spreading it have ulterior motives.

“We are holding the Senate from our honest and generous motives. Some others have some ulterior motives and are spreading distorted information. The Senate will turn into an incomplete body after June 16 as the tenure of teacher representatives will expire,” he said.

“Moreover, five student representatives in the Senate, nominated by Dhaka University Central Students’ Union (Ducsu), will see the expiration of their senate memberships after June 22.

“So, it will be an honour for the university to sit with a complete senate body, as it has been incomplete for many years,” the DU VC added.

However, talking to Dhaka Tribune on Saturday, Pro VC [Academic] Professor Nasreen Ahmad said that the VC came up with such a decision amid the Covid-19 pandemic to serve his agendas.

Besides, several senate members alleged that VC Prof Md Akhtaruzzaman called the senate session hurriedly to nominate “his own men” to the syndicate.

The DU VC wanted to nominate “his own men” and called the meeting in a hurry as the three-year tenure of 35 teacher representative senate members is going to end two days later on June 16, sources claimed.

"The VC issued a notice on May 13 about the meeting which could not fulfill the criteria as the university has been closed till May 30 due to Covid-19 pandemic in line with government holidays,” alleged a senate member seeking anonymity.

“It contradicts the DU Ordinance and Regulations (Calendar Part 2) which says the VC has to issue a notice to all the members at least 21 working days before the session,” he also added.

The meeting, attended by 63 members, also nominated Sonali Bank Managing Director Ataur Rahman Prodhan as a member of the university’s finance committee.

Moreover, a proposed statute to establish a research institute titled “Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Research Institute for Peace and Liberty” was also ratified.

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