The academic council of the Calicut University has thrown a spanner into the varsity's controversial decision to dilute the eligibility requirements for PhD admissions.
The council has refused to approve the varsity's August 2012 order bringing down the minimum eligibility for applying to PhD programmes from 55% marks in post graduate degree to 50%. The varsity has already completed this year's admissions using the diluted eligibility norms.
Majority of the members of the academic council strongly opposed the order issued in this regard stating that it would amount to dilution of the minimum requirements of the varsity's highest degree.
Vice-chancellor M Abdul Salam had accorded sanction to the research regulation 2012, which lowered the PhD eligibility criteria on August 20, 2012, by exercising the powers of the academic council. But according to CU Act, such orders issued by the VC exercising the powers of academic council are subject to the ratification of the decision by the council in its next meeting.
Many members of the council said that the order would lead to erosion of the value for the varsity's PhD degrees as none of the other universities in Kerala and probably in the entire country have brought down the eligibility criteria for PhD programmes.
It was also pointed out that the move is in violation of the principles laid down by institutions like UGC and CSIR which has set 55% marks in PG degree as the basic qualification for junior research fellow (JRF) examinations.
Confronted with stiff opposition the VC said that the academic standing committee of the syndicate will study the issue and submit a report at the earliest. It was decided that the matter will be discussed in the next meeting of the academic council.