A faculty member of the Agartala Government Medical College (AGMC) has been suspended for tweeting against Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb and the Citizenship Amendment Bill. A departmental disciplinary proceeding was also initiated against him.
Kaushik Chakraborty was served a showcause notice by the Health and Family Welfare Department of the Tripura government on August 2, which claimed he “obliquely criticised” the CM by posting derogatory remarks on social media which is “unbecoming of a public servant”. Citing his tweets on the Citizenship Bill, the notice said, “…it is observed that Dr Kaushik Chakraborty has also posted objectionable remarks in the social media against the Citizenship Amendment Bill which will definitely create a rift among the communities in the state.”
The tweet in reference was made on February 10 earlier this year, where Chakraborty had written, “I’m a proud Indian citizen from #Tripura & oppose #CitizenshipAmendmentBill as it would alter vulnerable demography in NE India & create unwanted tensions between many communities. On this issue I m with @PradyotManikya to protect interests of legal citizens over illegal immigrants.”
I'm a proud Indian citizen frm #Tripura & oppose #CitizenshipAmendmentBill as it would alter vulnerable demography in NE India & create unwanted tensions betwn many communities. On this issue I m with @PradyotManikya to protect interests of legal citizens over illegal immigrants. https://t.co/MtKPEOqTqL
— Dr. Kaushik Chakraborty (@drkctweets) February 10, 2019
Commenting on the CM’s series of gaffes which went viral on social media earlier this year, the medical college teacher had tweeted in Bangla, “Dear Biplabda, there is no Nobel Prize for loose talks. So, please don’t reduce such a coveted post to ridicule and call it a day. People have pinned a lot of hope on this new government formed through struggle and sacrifice. Don’t deject everyone. A well-wisher.”
Chakraborty had also expressed support for former state health minister Sudip Roy Barman, who was sacked from the cabinet in June this year.
In his reply to the notice, Chakraborty wrote, “Now I am at a loss to understand how, which manner I made obliquely criticism of the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Tripura by posting some derogatory remarks in social media and unless I get the copy (s) of the said remarks, I would not be able to give reply of the said Memo.”
Later on August 31, the Directorate of Medical Education furnished the snapshots of his tweets, comments of other users on that thread and sought his response within 10 days.
In his reply, the doctor wrote, “I am of the considered opinion that being a public servant I have not posted any of those comments in Social Media but it was on my personal capacity as a free citizen of a free country”. He also requested the authorities to call it a day on the subject and assured that he would be “very cautious” in future while making any comments on social media even in his personal capacity.
However, Chakraborty was suspended through an order issued by the Under Secretary to Health and Family Welfare and a departmental disciplinary proceeding was initiated against him.
He was also ordered to stay in Agartala during the disciplinary proceeding and not leave the headquarter without obtaining permission from ‘competent authority’.
The indianexpress.com tried to contact Chakraborty seeking his reaction. However, he declined to comment. Nobody from the Directorate of Medical Education was available for comments.
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