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Amid HC stay, Union ministry suspends NIPER director Raghuram Rao Akkinepally

Centre cites defiance and insubordination as reason; Rao had got stay against board chairman’s suspension order

punjab Updated: Oct 30, 2018 12:53 IST
Saurabh Chauhan
Saurabh Chauhan
Hindustan Times, Mohali
National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research,Raghuram Rao Akkinepally,VM Katoch
Raghuram Rao Akkinepally(Keshav Singh/HT)

The Union ministry of chemicals and fertilisers suspended National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) director Raghuram Rao Akkinepally on Monday evening.

Within 40 days, it is for the second time that Rao has been suspended from the post. Earlier, the orders were passed by NIPER board of governors (BoG) chairman VM Katoch on September 24, but Rao got a stay from the Punjab and Haryana high court on October 4.

A day before the HC was to hear the matter again, the Union ministry’s department of pharmaceuticals suspended Rao, citing the directions of the President of India, who is a visitor of NIPER, Mohali. The central government has given his charge to NIPER, Raebareli, director SJS Flora.

‘Reply not acceptable’

According to the ministry’s order, accessed by Hindustan Times, Rao has been suspended for “defiance and insubordination”.

“The reply to the show-cause notice has not been found acceptable and it has been noted that the working atmosphere of the institute has been badly affected due to the rebellious attitude of Rao. Disciplinary proceedings are to be initiated against Rao for his various acts of misdemeanour and he is to be placed under suspension,” reads the order issued by joint secretary Rajneesh Tingal.

Earlier, Rao had challenged his suspension, contending that the President of India, and not the BoG chairman, had the powers to place him under suspension. Following this, he got the stay in the high court.

All about the row

June 13: NIPER director Raghuram Rao Akkinepally suspends registrar PJP Waraich

June 14: Board of governors chairman VM Katoch directs Rao to revoke suspension

June 20: Rao challenges Katoch’s order in high court

July 20: HC revokes stay on a service matter related to Waraich

July 31: Waraich relieved from his post

September 24: Katoch suspends Rao

September 27: Rao moves HC

October 4: HC stays suspension order, sets October 30 as next date of hearing

October 29: Union minister suspends Rao on President’s directions

First Published: Oct 30, 2018 12:53 IST