KATHMANDU, Oct 4 A committee formed to recommend the new vice-chancellor of the Tribhuvan University (TU) has named three candidates including Dr Bhagwan Koirala.
TU is the country's largest and oldest university. Considering cardiologist Dr Koirala as the most suitable candidate to lead the university, the committee headed by Education, Science and Technology Minister Girirajmani Pokharel has placed him on the top of the list of candidates.
The second and third nominees are ENT specialist Dr Dharma Kanta Banskota and Chandramani Poudel respectively.
Under secretary at the ministry Pushpa Dhakal confirmed to Republica that Dr Koirala is the most preferred candidate to lead the TU.
Although several others had met Prime Minister KP Oli and Minister Pokharel offering themselves as candidates for TU vice-chancellor, the prime minister and the minister were not satisfied with them and had requested Dr Koirala to head the university.
In an interview with Republica earlier Dr Koirala had indicated that he could accept the post if the government agreed to his certain conditions. Dr Koirala, who is now working to establish a specialized child hospital, wants to make his plan a success. Dr Koirala reportedly wants free hand in key appointments.
In recent years, the country's largest university has courted a series of controversies. Media reports exposed some TU staffers who were found involved in producing fake gold medalists in exchange for bribes. Many allege that the academic quality has worsened at the TU in recent years after plagiarism-accused Tirtha Khaniya was appointed the university's vice-chancellor.
Considering his performance during his stay at Gangalal National Heart Center and TU Teaching Hospital, Prime Minister Oli had urged Dr Koirala to lead the TU.
The VC's position is lying vacant after Khaniya retired completing his service term. With Khaniya's retirement, some aspiring candidates have been lobbying with influential power centers seeking appointment to the position.
Ganesh Man Gurung, former head of the University Grants Commission, former National Medical Council chairman Dr Dharma Kanta Banskota, Sudha Tripathi, Upendra Koirala, among others were lobbying to secure the position. Erstwhile TU VC Khaniya was also lobbying with senior leaders seeking a new term.
TU is running without Vice-chancellor since August 24 after Tirtha Khaniya retired completing his four-year term.
The government had earlier formed a three-member committee with the education minister as head to recommend candidates for vice-chancellor. The two other members of the committee are Kamal Prasad Guragain and Dilli Prasad Sharma.