New Delhi, Apr 9 (PTI) The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry is inviting fresh applications for selecting a new vice-chancellor for the Visva Bharati University, weeks after President Ram Nath Kovind overturned his decision on the appointment at the behest of the government.

The ministry had asked Kovind to reconsider his assent to the appointment of Swapan Kumar Dutta as the head of the university in Santiniketan of which president is the visitor and prime minister is the chancellor.

The president had also scrapped the panel of three finalists forwarded by the ministry.

“We have launched a fresh search for the VC’s post. Anybody having outstanding academic record throughout and a minimum of 10 years’ experience as a professor in a university system or in an equivalent position in a reputed research or academic administrative organisation can apply for it,” a senior HRD ministry official said.

The Visva Bharati University has been functioning without a regular head for two years.

The university’s acting Registrar, Saugata Chattopadhyay, had written to the HRD ministry last month flagging the administrative difficulties being faced by the institution, as well as a general policy paralysis and zero recruitments.

The earlier committee headed by S K Srivastava, VC of North Eastern Hill University (NEHU), which had recommended Dutta’s name along with P N Mishra of the Institute of Management Studies at Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya (DAVV) in Indore and Sankar Kumar Nath of the geophysics and geology department at IIT-Kharagpur for the top job, now stands disbanded.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.