Patiala, 5 June (Press Ki Taquat Bureau) : The Punjab State Commission for Scheduled Castes, Chandigarh has issued a notice to the Registrar of Punjabi University, Patiala in a case of denial of promotion to a senior Dalit officer of the university, Dr. Harminder Singh Khokhar. On a complaint filed by Dr. Khokhar, the commission directed the Registrar of the university to present facts and information report on 10 June, 2020. Dr. Harminder Singh Khokhar alleged that the Punjabi University authorities are discriminating him on caste-base.
Dr. Harminder Singh Khokhar alleged that that he is working as Assistant Public Relations Officer (APRO) on regular basis since 2001 with highest academic and professional qualification and experience in Punjabi University, Patiala. He further stated that prior to this assignment he was working as Indian Information Service (IIS-98 batch) after selection through Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), New Delhi. Despite the completion of 21 years of regular service of the University and more than three years government of India job, the Punjabi University authorities has not given a single promotion to him, he added.
Dr. Harminder Singh Khokhar said that the charges of all vacant post of heads of teaching and non-teaching departments are given to the next senior most officer/teacher of the same department. But in case of the vacant post of Public Relations Officer the charge has been given to a person on probation from another department, who is on probation with without any professional qualification and experience. The charge of the vacant post of Public Relations Officer has not been given to him, because he belongs to scheduled castes.
Dr. Harminder Singh Khokhar has also expressed his grievance that Punjabi university has not framed any policy or rules for giving regular promotion to him to the post of Public Relations Officers (PROs), so far with the result that his career was stagnated. His argument was that the Supreme Court had held in several judgments that the government must provide at least two promotional opportunities to each employee his entire service period so that the services do not degenerate or stagnate. He alleged that the Punjabi university has adopted the Punjab government’s promotion rules for all non-teaching post, but he is discriminated being a scheduled castes by the university authorities.
In the notice the commission said that they had received a complaint of denial of promotion to Dr. Harminder Singh Khokhar and decided to investigate the complaint. The Commission asked the registrar to submit the fact and information report on 10 June, 2022 through a senior official of the university and give top-priority. The commission warned the university registrar that if the report is not received on or the before date, then the commission may exercise the powers of civil courts conferred on it under the section 10 of the Punjab State Scheduled Castes Act, 2004.