The Karnataka High Court (HC) has dismissed a plea by a former dean of a college seeking enhancement of retirement age from 62 to 65, stating this would affect the state exchequer and creation of job opportunities.
Chidanand P Mansur, who had served as dean of College of Agricultural Sciences at Hanumanamatti in Haveri district, had challenged the clause 30(8) of the University Statutes 1964 which prescribed the superannuation age of deans at 62. Mansur cited the UGC Regulations 2018 which prescribes 65 as the age of superannuation.
He contended that the central rules override the State law as, after the 42nd Amendment to the Constitution of India, Education was shifted to the Concurrent List.
The government advocate however contended that the UGC Regulations do not mandate 65 years as the age of superannuation for Agricultural Universities established by the state governments.
The option is with the State, and Karnataka has prescribed 62 years as the age of retirement through its order on October 28, 2009, he submitted.
In a recent judgement, a division bench of Justice Krishan S Dixit and Justice Krishna Bhat of the HC, dismissed the the former dean’s plea, and stated if his petition is allowed, thousands of employees in various universities and affiliated colleges across Karnataka would continue in office for an additional three years ‘and eventually there would be no vacancies for fresh appointments’.
The HC noted, “This is not desirable. At what age the public servants like teachers in the universities and constituent colleges should retire is purely within the domain of the state executive, which bears the expenditure towards salary, emoluments and terminal benefits.” It further added that such decisions are to be taken by the Legislature and Courts would not normally interfere in them.
“Whether it is prudent to retain old blood or to infuse fresh one is best left to the wisdom of the state executive and the universities,” the court noted.
With inputs from PTI.