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NLIU director SS Singh resigns • One week of successful student protests wind down • HC appoints registrar + inquiry

Result: NLIU Bhopal students get director resignation they asked for after days of peaceful protests
Result: NLIU Bhopal students get director resignation they asked for after days of peaceful protests

NLIU Bhopal director Prof SS Singh has resigned after a full week of students’ boycott of classes, sitting out at the university gates to peacefully protest alleged administrative apathy.

The protest has now been called off and regular classes will commence from tomorrow, according to sources present on campus, as a fact-finding committee will work on a report examining the administrative mismanagement at NLIU by the deadline of 25 December 2017.

The Madhya Pradesh high court today passed an order to expedite the search for and appointment of a new director to replace Singh and also appointed additional district and sessions judge Girbala Singh as the law school’s registrar.

In terms of an order passed by chief justice Hemant Gupta, justice JK Maheshwari, advocate general Purushendra Kaurav, senior advocate VK Tankha and Bhopal law department principal secretary AM Saxena:

The process of appointment of new director of the National Law Institute University shall be expedited.

Smt Girbala Singh, additional district and sessions judge, Bhopal be appointed as registrar of National Law Institute University Bhopal with effect from 16 November 2017.

A Committee consisting of additional chief secretary of the higher education department, govt of MP and the principal secretary, law and legislative affairs department, Govt of MP, Bhopal shall hold a fact finding enquiry into the allegations made by the students of the National Law Institute University and suggest measures to address the grievances of the students and improve the administration/management of the institution including examination and evaluation procedures and submit the report by 25 December 2017.

Prof Singh's first term as NLIU's director had come to an end on 31 May 2013 and there was a significant lapse of time before the law school acted to find a new director and eventually renewed Singh's term that year. His second five-year term would have therefore ended in another six months.

However, the registrar's post has been vacant since former registrar SC Pande was transferred in May 2013, and registrar-in-charge Ravi Pande has been holding the fort.

NLIU students had asked for examination system reforms, teaching reforms and attendance system reforms in addition to infrastructural improvements, eventually leading to a demand for Singh's resignation since they sat on continued protest on 9 November at 9am.

However until today's high court order after one full week of protest, the administration had shown hardly any signs of yielding and the students had condemned it for using “intimidation tactics”.

RMLNLU Lucknow's protest, also against administrative apathy, earlier this year had also taken an entire week before yielding any results.

NUSRL Ranchi students were made to call off their protest within four days this year, through written assurances, but within a few months they were back protesting at its gates, calling the relief cosmetic in nature.

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