Pettigrew College: Official Team Fails To Break Deadlock, Stir on, MU Washes Hands Off Question Paper Fiasco

Students of Pettigrew College putting their grievances before the official team. Image Credit: Sangai Photo

UKHRUL, May 31: Even as a four-member high level official team of Higher Education Directorate visited Pettigrew College here today to look into the grievances of the students, the agitating students have decided to continue with their stir as their demand for immediate sacking of the Principal-in-charge has not been fulfilled.

On the other hand, the Controller of Examination, Manipur University, on being contacted today, informed that no History question paper for BA 2nd year was sent to Pettigrew College, as the said institution had not requisitioned any question paper.

Talking to The Sangai Express, the official said that colleges should requisition question papers from the university, but in the case of Pettigrew College no such requisition was received and hence no question paper for History BA second year was sent.

The lone history student from this college had to go back without writing his examination as there was no question paper.

General Secretary of Students’ Union Pettigrew College, Miya MK said, “As the visiting official team has failed to assure us to remove the ‘incompetent’ Principal, we will continue with our agitation.”

Leveling serious allegations of mismanagement, incompetency and misappropriation of fund on the Principal Mashun Stone, the students have been picketing the Principal’s office since May 25 last leading to break down of college administration.

The four-member official team was led by Higher Education Special Secretary Th Chittaranjan. Higher Education Additional Director Dr RK Yaiskul, Higher Education OSD S Gourikumar Sharma and Higher Education OSD T Ojit Singh were the other team members.

It may be mentioned that the college students’ union submitted a memorandum to Education Minister DD Thaisii demanding immediate removal of the Principal last week.

The memorandum accused the Principal of levying exorbitant fees on the students which is much more than the structure laid down by Manipur University.

The representation also leveled serious allegations of deducting money from the salary of Guest Lecturers, who according to the students are sincere and dutiful.

The students also accused the Principal of not implementing the UGC sponsored schemes like setting up of Network Resource Centre and Internet Centre at the college. The Principal is unable to solve the problems of water and electricity problems inside the college campus as well, they alleged.

The students also accused the Principal of dereliction of duty and failure in checking staff attendance.

After listening to the complaints of the students, Higher Education Special Secretary Th Chittaranjan assured that necessary action would be initiated against the Principal-in-charge after finding out whether the allegations leveled against him are true.

He maintained that sacking of a Government employee from his post needs thorough inquiry; otherwise, the sacked employee may move the law Court.

The Special Secretary also informed the students that the issue of water and power supply to the college has been brought to the notice of the Executive Engineers of the Departments concerned.

The officials said, they were sent by Education Minister DD Thaisii to listen to the grievances of the students and teachers of the college.

The matter would be informed to the Minister and necessary action would be taken up by the Minister himself, they added.

Apart from inspecting the infrastructure of the college, the team separately interacted with the teachers.

Principal clarifies: Principal of Pettigrew College, Ukhrul, Mashun Stone has clarified that the allegations leveled against him by the students’ union are baseless and concocted. He said, he was appointed as Principal-in-charge of the college in March last year after serving the college as Selection Grade Lecturer for many years. Mashun Stone rebuffed the accusation that he deducted money from the salary of Guest Lecturers saying that he had never done such things.

Maintaining that college fees are fixed according to the fee structure of Manipur University, the Principal said that he never charged an extra pie on the students.

With regard to Network Resource Centre and Internet facilities, Mashun Stone said that equipments have been already procured and these are non-functional only because of erratic power supply. He also clarified that free remedial coaching for ST and OBC are in full swing. A Selection Grade Lecturer has been appointed as the Co-ordinator, he added. Expressing reservations against the agitation without even informing him, the Principal urged the students to call off the agitation in the larger interest of the students of the college.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express, Irungbam Prabin)

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