Hamdard National Foundation (HNF), the sponsoring body of Jamia Hamdard, has alleged financial and administrative irregularities by the Vice-Chancellor, including taking unapproved loans resulting in incurred debt of Rs 14 crore, excess expenditure resulting in a deficit of more than Rs 45 crore, tampering with minutes of meetings of statutory bodies, and appointing faculty without advertising for posts.
A letter enlisting 29 alleged irregularities was written by the HNF chairman Hammad Ahmed to the University Grants Commission (UGC) chairman on August 12. Ahmed wrote that in his “more than 50 years of administration” as a co-founder of the body, he had “not come across a more corrupt University administration”.
The Vice-Chancellor has denied all allegations. UGC chairman D P Singh did not respond to calls and texts seeking a comment.
In his letter, Ahmed wrote that Jamia Hamdard “availed credit facilities on four occasions in the last seven months, all without the approval of the HNF”, resulting in a debt of Rs 14 crore.
“Expenditures are substantially higher than income for four years in a row, since the Vice-Chancellor (V-C) assumed office in 2016. It is significant to note that when the V-C took office, he inherited a surplus. As of the last filed balance sheet (2018-19), that surplus has turned into a deficit of Rs 45 crore. At the writing of this report, the deficit is much higher,” he said.
Ahmed added that a new project called ‘Construction of hostel buildings for Unani, Medical, and Nursing students’ had been started in December 2019, with a project cost of Rs 23.08 crore.
“No member of the sponsoring body had been informed of this project,” he alleged.
Similarly, he alleged that the V-C had spent more than Rs 2 crore for renovation of the Vice Chancellor’s Lodge and that “no budgetary approval from BoM (Board of Management), Finance Committee, or sponsoring body or any other body exists for this”.
“Minutes of meetings of both the BoM and Finance Committee meetings have been regularly manipulated in favour of the decisions of the Vice-Chancellor and to paint the sponsoring body in a bad light,” Ahmed alleged.
He also said “professors in various departments have been appointed without advertisement, a clear violation of University bye-laws”.
V-C Seyed Ehtesham Hasnain said the allegations were “false”, “baseless” and “motivated”. “The University has taken loans against its Fixed Deposits from the bank for paying the salary of its employees. The loans were taken with the approval of BoM… No approval from HNF is required for taking loans. BoM is the final authority in all administrative and financial matters and is fully independent of the sponsoring body,” he said.
“Out of the deficit of Rs 45 crore, Rs 28 crore relates to Hamdard Institute of Medical Sciences and Research. The remaining amount of Rs 17 crore relates to the University. The financial condition of the University has been adversely affected because the HNF has not given any grant to the University for the last four years,” Hasnain added.
He said all expenditure — whether on the V-C lodge or other construction — was done by following “due procedure”, as were the faculty appointments.
“There is no manipulation of minutes of the BoM, the Finance Committee or any other body of the University,” said Hasnain.
“The HNF is unhappy with the University because the BoM has refused to pass illegal resolutions to part with its land and assets and the University has challenged the family settlement which divides the University among the two warring factions of the Hamdard family,” he claimed.
However, HNF Treasurer Sajid Ahmed said, “No partition of the University has taken place in any settlement. In fact, HNF is not the owner of the land or the university, so it cannot partition anything… The settlement among family members of HNF is simply over control over different aspects of the University, to maintain independent management of different aspects of the University. This was done as a good management practice to avoid conflict. Neither has the University been partitioned nor can it be.”
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