• January 19, 2022

D.Litt row: Kerala varsity VC says he was being careful with the grammar and spelling of his life

Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 11 (PTI) Kerala University Vice Chancellor V P Mahadevan Pillai, who is at the centre of a controversy over denial of D.Litt to President Ram Nath Kovind, on Tuesday issued a statement saying he was being careful with the “grammar and spelling of his life.” His statement came a day after he was pulled up by Governor Arif Mohammed Khan for the manner in which Pillai wrote a letter to him conveying that certain university Syndicate members had turned down the proposal for conferring the D.Litt on the President.

The Governor had also criticised the language and style of the letter written to him by the Vice Chancellor.

“I am very careful not to lose the grammar and spelling of life. The hands tend to tremble when the mind is shaken and I do not see it as a shortcoming,” Pillai said in a statement typed out in Malayalam on a Kerala University letter-head, adding that there will be no more reactions.

This was his first reaction in the entire episode.

A handwritten letter purportedly by Pillai came out in public domain on Saturday confirming that the Governor had recommended to confer an honorary D.Litt degree on President Kovind.

His letter was trolled by political parties including the BJP for its mistakes in it and the unprofessional manner in which it was given to the Governor.

The letter also revealed that the Vice Chancellor, instead of convening a Syndicate meeting to decide on the matter, had merely “discussed” it with some Syndicate members and informed the Governor that the University Syndicate had turned down the proposal.

“…After returning, I have discussed with several members of Syndicate about the matter of conferring D.Litt degree to his excellency the President of India. The members of the Syndicate turn (sic) it down,” the handwritten letter dated December 7, 2021, read.

Khan had said that the language used by the Vice Chancellor over the phone and in the letter, subsequently, was so “obnoxious”, that as Governor of the state he was “embarrassed” to show his face outside Kerala.

“It is not that the poor thing (VC) does not know how to write five lines, he does not even know how to talk or convey a message. I was shocked and surprised by what he had said (over the phone). It left me stunned how anyone can use this language. I could not believe an educated person could say this kind of sentence. What he said was totally obnoxious. We are becoming a laughing stock,” Khan had said.

Senior Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala had earlier claimed that the Left Front government rejected the Governor’s recommendation to confer D.Litt on President Kovind, an allegation which was categorically rejected by state Higher Education Minister R Bindu.

The Governor had earlier expressed his wish to step down as the Chancellor of universities in the state from December 8 last year, alleging political interference in their functioning.

After the VC’s letter — which appeared to have been scribbled on a plain paper — came to light, Leader of Opposition V D Satheesan had alleged that the whole issue was the Vice-Chancellor’s mistake.

Khan, who is at loggerheads with the state government over alleged political interference in the functioning of the universities, had said on December 30 that he was even ready to transfer the powers of chancellor to the Higher Education minister, who is also the pro-chancellor of the varsities. PTI RRT RRT SS SS

source: PTI News

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