JNU teachers start public inquiry against V-C, seek probe by President
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JNU teachers start public inquiry against V-C, seek probe by President

Monday was the first day of a five-day public inquiry initiated by JNU Teachers’ Association (JNUTA) against vice-chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar on seven charges

delhi Updated: Oct 24, 2017 12:47 IST
Heena Kausar
Heena Kausar
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Jawaharlal Nehru University vice-chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar.(Vipin Kumar/HT File)

A public inquiry by the Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers’ Association (JNUTA) has found that vice-chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar allegedly violated statutory provisions and obligations and suggested that President Ram Nath Kovind, who is Visitor to the university, should initiate a probe against him.

Monday was the first day of the five-day public inquiry initiated by JNUTA against the V-C on seven charges.

Some of the charges against the V-C, which will be heard till Friday, are undermining the faculty selection procedure, undermining JNU’s sexual harassment policy, and displaying a callous attitude towards missing student Najeeb Ahmad. The final verdict of the public inquiry would be announced on Friday.

The probe panel consists of JNU emeritus professor Prabhat Patnaik, former JNU professor PK Yadav, Delhi University professors Nandita Narain and Apoorvanand and journalist and author Akshaya Mukul.

Three of the five panel members – Patnaik, Narain, and Apoorvanad – said the V-C was guilty of violating statutory norms and going ahead with decisions on academic matters without consulting the teaching community.

Presenting the case against the V-C, Jayati Ghosh, a professor from the Centre of Economic Studies and Planning, accused him of not following university rules and deliberately calling academic council meetings during vacations.

“There were three academic council meetings since he joined two years and all during vacations when most of us are engaged with other activities outside campus. Even in these meetings, we are not allowed to speak, especially women members. Agendas are just read and passed without discussions. Any dissent is not accepted,” she said.

Ghosh said the V-C tampered with minutes of the meetings and added a clause that gave him powers to nominate members to the selection committee. “This was not presented in the AC meeting for discussion,” she said.

Narain, former president of the DU teachers’ association (DUTA), said, “It is a case of violating university statutes and provisions. His actions are in violation of the JNU Act, which is contempt of Parliament.

Apoorvanand said, “The visitor of the university should constitute an inquiry against the VC on these charges.”

The JNUTA presented a defence on behalf of the V-C after there was no response from his office on a request of the teacher’s body to send one.

The statement was derived from various media statements the V-C had made on different issues.

“The V-C has stood for implementation of laws, rules and regulations in all instances,” JNUTA vice president Amitabh Singh said while presenting the V-C’s defence.

First Published: Oct 24, 2017 12:35 IST