JD(U) suspends MLA over university job scam in Bihar
JD(U) spokesperson Sanjay Singh said Tarapur MLA Mewalal Choudhary had been suspended from the party as charges over charges of irregularities against him in the appointment of staff when he was the vice chancellor of the Bihar Agriculture University.india Updated: Feb 23, 2017 16:51 IST
Bihar’s ruling Janata Dal (United) on Thursday suspended its legislator Mewalal Choudhary for alleged “gross irregularities” in the appointment of staff when he was the vice chancellor of the Bihar Agriculture University (BAU) in Bhagalpur district.
JD(U) spokesperson Sanjay Singh told reporters here that the lawmaker from Tarapur in Munger district, had been suspended from the party.
“The party has decided to suspend him as charges of irregularities against him in the appointment of staff in BAU were found to be true,” Singh said.
Choudhary said he was not given chance to explain his side of the story.
“I was suspended without a show-cause notice to me. But I respect the decision of the party,” he said.
Two days ago, a case was lodged with the Sabour police station against him and others. Choudhary was the vice chancellor of the BAU till 2015 before he contested the assembly election from Tarapur district on a JD(U) ticket.
Police said a probe committee, headed by retired Patna high court judge justice Syed Mohammed Mahfooz Alam, constituted in 2015, had indicted Choudhary for anomalies in appointment. The panel found that many appointments during his tenure were made by ignoring the candidates’ performance in written test and academic records.
Those selected were given high marks by the screening committee in interview and PowerPoint presentation (PPT), sources said, adding that even Ph.D. degree-holders and NET qualified candidates were ignored for the posts of assistant professor and junior scientist.
BAU sources said the university had in 2011 issued an advertisement seeking applications for 281 posts of assistant professor-cum-junior scientist. The appointments were made against only 161 vacancies under general category in 2012.
The inquiry was ordered on the basis of complaints received by the chancellor’s office about irregularities in the agriculture university.
The complaints said candidates who secured low marks in academics were given high scores in ‘interview and presentation’ to favour them. Likewise, many others with high scores in academics were shown to have fared poorly in ‘interview and presentation’, it was alleged.
An RTI reply provided to an applicant also corroborated the charges of irregularities in the appointment. The BAU provided the RTI reply nearly after three years.
Bihar Agricultural University is an autonomous institute under the Bihar government, established in 2010 under Indian Council of Agricultural Research, situated at Sabour, in Bhagalpur district of Bihar, which is 230 kms east of Patna.