The Kerala High Court has recently passed a judgment holding that the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has the power to prescribe mode of recruitment for maintenance of standards of technical education but it is not empowered to bring in regulations with retrospective effect.
The division bench of Justice A.M. Shaffique and Justice Gopinath P. was hearing petitions challenging the common order dated 9.12.2019 of the Kerala Administrative Tribunal, which had held that direct recruitment is the only mode of recruitment to the post of Lecturer in Polytechnic Colleges under the Government of Kerala.
The applicants before the Tribunal were persons included in a ranked list prepared by the Kerala Public Service Commission for selection to the post of Lecturers in Technical streams in Polytechnics under the Technical Education Department. They had approached the Tribunal contending that in terms of the AICTE Regulations on Pay Scales, Service Conditions and Minimum Qualifications For Appointment of Teachers and Other Academic Staff such as Library and Physical Education Personnel in Technical Institutions and Measures for the Maintenance of Standards in Technical Education – (Diploma) Regulation, 2019, (the 2019 Regulations) Lecturers in Polytechnic could be appointed only through direct recruitment in spite of the fact that the Special Rules namely, Kerala Technical Education Service Rules, 1967, after its amendment through the Kerala Technical Education Service (Amendment) Special Rules, 2010, provided that the post of Lecturer in Engineering/Technology could be filled up by direct recruitment and through appointment by transfer from the categories mentioned in those Rules in a specified ratio. The Tribunal accepted the contentions of the applicants before it and held that the recruitment to the post of Lecturer could only be by direct recruitment. This finding of the Tribunal is under challenge before the Kerala High Court.