Delhi University vice-chancellor Dinesh Singh has told the human resource development (HRD) ministry that its show-cause notice to him is based “on the assumption I am guilty and I need to be punished straightaway”.
In a 26-page response to the notice — it was served on March 17 and sought a reply by March 31 on why he should not be dismissed — Singh has rejected the charges against him, including one that alleges that the four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP) was introduced in DU without clearance from the academic council, executive council, university court and the visitor who, in this case, is President Pranab Mukherjee.
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In his defence, Singh said “right from December 2012, when the initial FYUP ordinance amendment was approved by the executive council until June 2014, never once had either the University Grants Commission or the MHRD raised any question regarding non-compliance with statutory procedures with regard to the amendment of the relevant ordinance by the university”.
“Allegation that amendment to the ordinance was never submitted to the visitor: This is clearly contrary to the record of communications. This allegation is clearly false as established vide MHRD’s letter of 30.07.2013 which demonstrates that approval of the FYUP was submitted to the visitor by way of letter of 19.7.2013 itself.”
Singh even challenged the jurisdiction of the show-cause notice. “The visitor exercises powers conferred to him under the DU Act and does not exercise the executive power of the Union of India while dealing with affairs of the university. The present notice, which has been issued by the Government of India and signed by the Joint Secretary, Government of India, is without jurisdiction and has not been issued by the competent authority.”
“The show-cause notice proceeds on the basis on the assumption I am guilty and I need to be punished straightaway… The decisions alluded to have been taken accordingly with the concerned statutory bodies discharging their role and functions, and no decision can be or has been taken by me individually as the vice-chancellor. Even if there may be some disagreement on the merits of the decision, such differences of opinion can never be the basis for alleging misconduct or dereliction of duty, particularly, in matters relating to academic affairs,” he said.
The HRD ministry sought Singh’s response on these allegations:
* FYUP was introduced without following statutory DU provisions.
* Sathyam committee pointed out that Singh was a member of the oversight committee which provided head-wise outlays under Other Backward Classes expansion grants and diverted salary grant to buy 55,000 laptops.
* DU did not follow the instruction of UGC on reservation policy.
* DU did not obtain prior approval of the All India Council for Technical Education for B.Tech courses.
Replying to the notice, Singh countered each allegation:
* Unless and until an ordinance is cancelled by the court of the university or cancelled by the visitor, an ordinance made by the executive council continues to be in force. All ordinances of FYUP were made following the law declared by Delhi HC and reported to university court and submitted to MHRD for transmission to the visitor. Till date, no disapproval has been received from the visitor.
* I am quite appalled at the number of false statements made in the allegation; I categorically deny that I have ever been a member of any oversight committee. The fact-finding committee appointed by the UGC into the manner in which OBC grants have been utilised concluded that there was no ‘misappropriation’ and ‘no financial motives can be attributed to DU’.
* The UGC has acknowledged in the high court that the DU roster is in accordance with UGC guidelines.
* DU is not required to obtain AICTE approval for BTech courses according to Supreme Court judgments.
DUTA SHOCKED AT singh’s REPLY
Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) expressed its shock over the reply given by vice-chancellor Dinesh Singh to the Human Resource Development Ministry and called him “corrupt and brazen”.
Speaking to Newsline, DUTA president Nandita Narain, said, “His nonchalant refusal to accept guilt in matters related to the unauthorised restructuring of undergraduate courses through FYUP (four-year undergraduate programme) is shocking.”
Singh had received a show-cause notice from HRD ministry on March 17 asking him to explain his position on the controversial FYUP plan and other allegations. In his 26 page reply, Singh defended the decisions he had taken.
DUTA also accused Singh of diverting the funds from various accounts of the university — including OBC funds, university corpus funds and teachers welfare funds — into “dummy” schemes like purchase of laptops for FYUP scheme.