Bengal cabinet clearance to make CM chancellor of state-run universities in place of Governor

In Bengal, the Governor heads 17 universities.

The West Bengal cabinet on Monday cleared its earlier proposal for a bill to make the chief minister of the state the chancellor of all state-run universities in place of the Governor.

For the rule to come into place, the bill will be placed in the state Assembly where it has to be cleared by the majority. And then it has to be cleared by the Governor himself. According to Trinamool Congress MP Sougata Roy, the Governor can return the bill once without clearing it, but he is bound to clear it the second time it goes to him.

Earlier, state education minister Bratya Basu had said that the bill will be introduced in the next Assembly session.

In most states, the Governor serves as ex-officio chancellor and appoints vice-chancellors of state universities and presides over convocations among other things. In Bengal, the Governor heads 17 universities, including Calcutta University, Jadavpur University, Kalyani University among others.

In Bengal, the state government has been having differences with the Governor on various issues. According to a government official, Kerala and Tamil Nadu have already taken the decision to make the CM chancellor of state universities, as per recommendations of the Punchhi Commission, which was formed by the Centre to examine Centre-state relations.

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