Pondicherry varsity: V-C Chandra Krishnamurthy’s D.Litt degree fake, says probe panel

The final report of the committee, accessed by The Indian Express, shows that the V-C was indicted on six charges.

Written by Ritika Chopra | New Delhi | Published:October 23, 2015 2:01 am

The fact-finding committee constituted by the government to probe allegations against Pondicherry Vice-Chancellor Chandra Krishnamurthy has found her guilty of serious academic frauds, including holding a fake D.Litt degree, it has now emerged.

Krishnamurthy, who is currently on forced leave, was served a show-cause notice by the President on August 21. She was asked to explain why she should not be sacked.

The final report of the committee, accessed by The Indian Express, shows that the V-C was indicted on six charges.

Apart from establishing that her D.Litt from a Sri Lankan University is fake, the inquiry panel also concluded that Krishnamurthy had authored only one book against the claim of three and that she lied about guiding nine Ph.D students and receiving four research projects.

The probe panel could trace only one out of the 25 papers she claimed to have authored and that too was 75 per cent plagiarised. Her claims of holding the title of Professor before being appointed as the head of Pondicherry University also could not be verified.

Krishnamurthy was appointed Pondicherry University’s first female head by the UPA II government in February 2013.

The HRD Ministry, led by Smriti Irani, instituted an inquiry against her halfway through her tenure after an indefinite agitation by a section of students and teachers left the institutions paralysed for days. The students and faculty were seeking her ouster for her “autocratic behaviour” and mismanagement of university affairs.

The government appointed former V-C of Punjab University Jai Rup Singh, former bureaucrat Nita Chowdhury and ex-director of Indian Law Institute K N Chandrasekharan Pillai to the probe panel.

The final report of the panel states that Krishnamurthy’s Doctor of Literature degree was awarded by a fake university in Sri Lanka, which is listed as the “largest degree mill in the world”. Krishnamurthy, the panel said, did not cooperate in the inquiry and did not provide any response to the complaints against her. She also did not send copies of her books and publications to the probe committee.

The V-C has not yet replied to the show-cause notice issued by the President, as she has got a stay order from the High Court.

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