HRD Ministry to ask IIT to reinstate whistleblower

The Supreme Court once termed him as one of the many “unsung heroes who helped improve the system”.

Written by Anubhuti Vishnoi | New Delhi | Published: February 28, 2013 1:32:40 am

Based on the advice of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC),the Human Resource Development Ministry has decided to recommend that the suspension of whistleblower IIT Kharagpur professor Rajeev Kumar be revoked. He was suspended on May 13,2011 based on a range of allegations,including maligning and misrepresenting the institute.

Kumar,who works with the computer science department of the institute,had questioned the marks system of students appearing for the IIT-JEE. He used the RTI Act to expose the alleged fake institute that was operating from within the Kharagpur campus. He had also alleged that admission of wards of senior functionaries of the IIT was being facilitated.

The courts have lauded his effort to bring transparency into the IIT system using the RTI Act. The Supreme Court once termed him as one of the many “unsung heroes who helped improve the system”.

On CVC advice,the Central Vigilance Officer of HRD Ministry,Amit Khare,recommended that the suspension orders against Kumar be revoked. The CVO order will now be sent to IIT Kharagpur,which has been resisting any move to give relief to Kumar.

Though initially the ministry had kept away from the issue citing the autonomy of IITs,it wrote to IIT Kharagpur last month asking it to review Kumar’s suspension order and place the matter for review before the Visitor,President of India. When the institute refused,the ministry sought the advice of CVC.

Last week,the Delhi HC had sought a report from the Centre,IIT Kharagpur and the CVC on a plea filed by Kumar seeking interim relief. He had alleged the enquiry against him by the IIT was biased.

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