President’s nod to inquiry into ‘misgovernance’ at Delhi University

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Published on Oct 27, 2020 11:20 PM IST
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New Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind has given his assent to an inquiry into alleged misgovernance at Delhi University, officials said on Tuesday. The President is the visitor (head of the institution) to the university.

“The president has given his assent for a probe into issues of misgovernance. The Union education ministry has raised questions about the governance of the varsity and the consent has been received. The ministry will now set up a committee that will probe the issues,” said an education ministry official.

The official added that vice-chancellor Yogesh Kumar Tyagi will continue to be on leave.

Meanwhile, an email notification issued on Wednesday gave a new twist to the ongoing turf war over the appointment of top officials in the central institution.

In the notification, issued by PC Jha in his capacity as the registrar, all DU officials were asked to comply with the DU Act, its statutes and ordinances. Soon, Vikas Gupta, the registrar, issued a notice to Jha for issuing the notification illegally.

Jha represents the lobby backed by vice-chancellor Yogesh Tyagi and Gupta is backed by the group led by pro vice-chancellor PC Joshi. After a bitter spat over the appointment of a new registrar that went on for two days, the Union education ministry had nullified the appointment of Jha, saying since Tyagi is on sick leave he could not take such decisions. Gupta’s appointment had also been cleared by the executive council, the highest decision making body of the varsity, in a meeting on October 21.

Gupta on Tuesday issued a memorandum to Jha for issuing a notification while posing as the registrar. “Jha has been constantly issuing statements falsely posing as the registrar of the university. We had issued a memorandum to him last Saturday on the same grounds but he is yet to respond to it. Now, if he will not respond to this new memo in the next 24 hours, action will be taken against him,” Gupta said in the memo.

Jha, however, said that as per the university’s norms he is the “duly appointed” registrar. “The vice-chancellor has appointed me as the acting registrar and the ministry cannot interfere in it as per the DU Act. I do not accept the validity of the memo issued by Gupta as he is not technically the registrar of the university.”

Earlier in the day, an e-mail was sent out from V-C Tyagi’s official mail ID to the university officials, principals, and media persons describing the achievements of the institution under his tenure since 2016. From DU getting an institution of eminence (IoE) tag and autonomy in 2019 to building journalism school and cybersecurity institute, the email lists out several other initiatives the university has taken between 2016 and 2020.

While Tyagi did not respond to calls and texts sent for comment, Jha said, “The email was sent out by the V-C himself. It’s a befitting response for those who have been alleging that Tyagi did not do any work during his tenure.”

Gupta said that the university will soon ask the technical team to hand over the rights to the V-C office email to the acting V-C PC Joshi. “As far as we know, V-C Tyagi is on leave and we do not know who has the access to his e-mail ID and password. Our technical team will soon block it and hand it over to the pro-VC,” Gupta said.

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