Several senior faculty members of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) on Thursday welcomed a court order extending the stay against the sacking of institute director P Venugopal as a vindication of their stand.
"We are happy with the court order and have full faith in the judiciary. The fight is for autonomy of the institute and today's decision is just a vindication of our stand," said KK Handa, general secretary of the AIIMS Faculty Association.
"We will meet our director to greet him this evening," Handa told.
The Delhi High Court on Thursday extended the stay till Nov 7 after Venugopal's lawyer, Maninder Singh, sought time to file a rejoinder on the centre's reply.
"It's a victory for all those fighting against any reservation in institutes of higher education. Everyone should get time to explain their stand and the court's decision is a welcome move," said Vinod Patra, president of the AIIMS resident doctors' association.
The renowned cardiologist was dismissed from the post by the AIIMS governing body at a meeting headed by Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss, who is also the institute president on July 5. The court stayed the sacking after Venugopal filed a petition complaining that his dismissal was arbitrary.
The central government challenged the stay order through a public interest litigation (PIL) last month citing more than 45 reasons for his ouster.
The PIL alleged that Venugopal's appointment as director in 2003 for a five-year term was illegal. He was appointed as director by the previous National Democratic Alliance government that allows him to work till 2008.