Karnataka HC Rejects Former University Dean’s Plea for Raising Retirement Age

Karnataka’s Supreme Court (HC) has rejected a plea from a former university dean to raise the retirement age from 62 to 65, alleging it would affect the state treasury and job creation.

Chidanand P. Mansur, who had served as Dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences at Hanumanamatti in Haveri District, had challenged clause 30(8) of the University Statute of 1964, which set the retirement age of deans at 62 years. Mansur cited the 2018 UGC regulations that prescribe 65 as the retirement age.

He claimed that the central rules take precedence over the state law as education was shifted to the contemporaneous list after the 42nd Amendment to the Constitution of India.

However, the government advocate argued that UGC regulations do not mandate 65 as the retirement age for agricultural universities set by state governments.

The option rests with the state, and Karnataka has prescribed 62 as retirement age through his order submitted on October 28, 2009.

In a recent verdict, a department bench of Judge Krishan S Dixit and Judge Krishna Bhat of the HC rejected the former dean’s plea, declaring that if his request is granted, thousands of employees from various universities and affiliated colleges in Karnataka would continue in office for yet once three years ‘and in the end there would be no vacancies for new appointments’.

The HC noted: “This is not desirable. The age at which civil servants, such as university and constituent college teachers, should retire is purely within the purview of the state executive, who bears the expenses of salary, emoluments, and benefits. It added that such decisions should be made by the legislature and that courts normally do not interfere.

“Whether it is wise to keep old blood or to give fresh blood is best left to the wisdom of the state administration and the universities,” the court noted.

With input from PTI.

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