Following the resignation of the Chancellor of Nalanda University, George Yeo, protesting over the dissolution of the governing board without taking him into confidence, the Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday, 30 November 2016 comes with its versions.
Vikas Swarup, the spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs said that they have great respect for Mr. George Yeo for his great contributions to Nalanda University. But the decisions were taken so that the University would be in tune with the legal regime under which it was established.
Arguments of Government in favour of formation of the Governing Board:
- President of India, who is also the visitor of the Nalanda University, has approved the constitution of the Governing Board of the University.
- It is done in accordance with Nalanda University Act, Section 7, 2010.
- For nine years, Nalanda Mentor Group had been functioning properly. However, the Nalanda Act provided three years of tenure to the members.
- The decision to constitute the Board is in accordance with law.
Swarup further said that the governing body has been formed as provided in the Act of the University. Previously it was an ad-hoc arrangement. So if the government brings legality to a set-up in accordance with the law passed by Parliament, then how can anybody have any issues with it.
George Yeo resigned on last Friday, 25 November 2016, saying that when he appointed to take charge he was assured that Nalanda University would have autonomy. But that was not happening right now. He had protested the way in which the governing board was formed without taking him into confidence. The government had dropped several prominent people from the board. These include:-
- Amartya Sen, Nobel laureate
- Sugata Bose, Professor Harvard University
- Lord Meghnad Desai, Economist from the United Kingdom