Higher Education

Higher Education

Amid crisis, MU gets new acting director of exams

PUBLISH DATE 17th August 2017

Mumbai University on Wednesday got a new acting director (examinations & evaluations) amid the crisis surrounding the delay in assessment and results. The state government used its discretionary powers to appoint Arjun Ghatule, who is controller of examinations at Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YCMOU). Ghatule implemented on-screen assessment at the Nashik-based university . With his appointment as head of examination house, the university now has an entire team of new officials holding key positions.

Ghatule, who holds a master's degree in computer applications, will be in-charge for three months or till a new director is appointed. Deepak Wasave, the in-charge director, had requested that he be relieved from August 16, citing health issues.The director (examinations) post, controller (examinations) in the earlier act, is considered a high-pressure job. Few have held office for more than a year, when the tenure is of five years.Wasave held the in-charge position for almost two years after Dinesh Bhonde stepped down in August 2015.

Earlier this month, the governor's office appointed an acting pro-vice-chancellor, Dhiren Patel, and an acting vice-chancellor, Devanand Shinde, even as incumbent Sanjay Deshmukh was told to proceed on leave. While the state has brought in “efficient officials“ to hold key positions in the university , academicians are worried the move may prove counter-productive with a new team working on the exam mess. Registrar M A Khan too is moving to another position in the state.

A principal said the state government has almost taken control of the university and is responsible for making impor tant decisions. While the pro-vice chancellor's post was lying vacant for two years, having a new team could prove risky at this stage as they may take a few days to get a grip of the situation, said a professor.

Ghatule, who took charge on Wednesday evening, however, dealt with on-screen assessment for three major exams. “We have about seven lakh students taking the exam in AprilMay and we assessed 41 lakh answer-sheets online. YCMOU has implemented on-screen assessment in October 2015,“ he said, adding that he would take stock of the situation in a day or two, and ensure results are declared soon.

Meanwhile, with more than 65,000 commerce papers from the Institute of Distance and Open Learning (IDOL) pending for assessment, the university is again seeking help from other state universities.

“Commerce teachers in Mumbai are burdened with additional work as the ratio of teachers to students is skewed,“ said an official.

Till Wednesday , 334 of 477 results were out. Around 1.59 lakh papers are yet to be assessed. On Wednesday , 698 teachers assessed around 11,500 answer-sheets, but more than 60% IDOL papers are pending. Officials claimed the university hopes to announce more than 50 results on Thursday , including some from commerce. Results of 130 exams in arts and technology are out.