The Hindu Editorial Vocabulary– December 19, 2023; Day 514
Sign Up on PracticeMock for Free Tests, General Awareness, Current Affairs, Exam Notifications and Updates
Difficult Word/ PhraseContextual Sense
Unseemly Not in keeping with accepted standards of what is right or proper in polite society
Belligerent Engaged in war
Testy Easily irritated or annoyed
Acrimony A rough and bitter manner
Snowball Increase or accumulate at a rapidly accelerating rate
Partisan Devoted to a cause or party
Stymie Hinder or prevent the progress or accomplishment of
Unwarranted Incapable of being justified or explained
Redress Act of correcting an error or a fault or an evil
Arbitrary not seeming to be based on any reason or plan and sometimes seeming unfair

Unseemly(Not in keeping with accepted standards of what is right or proper in polite society) turn: Raj Bhavan’s relations in Kerala

Kerala’s Governor-government conflict should not result in belligerent (Engaged in war) protests

The conflict between the Governor and the Left Democratic Front government in Kerala has turned unseemly. Raj Bhavan’s relations with regimes other than those run by the Bharatiya Janata Party have been quite testy (Easily irritated or annoyed) in recent years, and the problem is quite acute in Kerala. The issue arises from sharp political and ideological differences, as appointees in Raj Bhavan have made it a point to use their position as chancellor of universities as well as their constitutional role in granting assent to Bills to cause annoyance to elected governments. In a sign of rising acrimony (A rough and bitter manner), differences over appointments to the Senate of the Kerala University have snowballed (Increase or accumulate at a rapidly accelerating rate) into frequent protests. While student activists accuse the Chancellor, Governor Arif Mohammed Khan, of appointing right-wing sympathisers to the Senate, he has been complaining about political interference in the universities. In the latest incident, the University of Calicut saw dramatic scenes as activists of the Students’ Federation of India (SFI) put up posters against the Governor-Chancellor. The Governor has accused Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and the State police of being behind the poster campaign against him. Some days ago, SFI activists blocked Mr. Khan’s car, resulting in some arrests.

Recent court judgments have underscored that elected regimes should not be undermined by unelected Governors. Such verdicts have drawn public attention to the partisan (Devoted to a cause or party) role played by Governors to stymie (Hinder or prevent the progress or accomplishment of) governance in States not run by the ruling party at the Centre. In a recent ruling, the Supreme Court of India set aside a reappointment given to a vice-chancellor in Kannur University on the ground that there was unwarranted (Incapable of being justified or explained) interference by the government. Given that chancellors are expected to act independently, there is much scope for a clash with the government. However, responding to such situations through organised protests is not advisable. Chief Ministers should instruct their supporters to avoid street protests that turn belligerent. One way to resolve the issue is by legislation either removing Governors as chancellors or transferring the chancellor’s powers to any other authority. However, Bills containing such changes are not likely to get the Governors’ assent. This does make legal redress (Act of correcting an error or a fault or an evil) difficult for those aggrieved by what they deem to be arbitrary (not seeming to be based on any reason or plan and sometimes seeming unfair) use of the chancellor’s powers. It may be time to think of a long-term solution in the form of a statutory prohibition on Governors being chancellors of State universities. The M.M. Punchhi Commission on Centre-State relations had recommended ending the practice of burdening Governors with the role of university chancellor.

Want to improve your vocabulary further? Download the Lists of Word-Meanings of Previous Months here.

    Free Mock Tests for the Upcoming Exams

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *