Kerala governor sacks university vice-chancellor

For the first time in the history of Kerala, the vice-chancellor of a university was sacked before expiry of the term.

By T.k. Devasia

Published: Wed 14 May 2014, 12:58 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 1:53 AM

Governor Sheila Dikshit, who is the chancellor of universities in the state, removed Mahatma Gandhi University Vice-Chancellor A.V. George on Monday for allegedly misrepresenting his credentials during his selection to the post.

George tried to meet the governor and submit his resignation, but the former did not grant an audience to him. The officials at the Raj Bhavan handed over the termination letter to him. A copy of the same will be submitted to the high court, where George had challenged the charges against him.

The action came after hearing George, Chief Secretary E.K. Bharath Bhushan and Additional Chief Secretary (Higher Education) K.M. Abraham. The government had sought his removal after an inquiry found that the qualification he mentioned in the bio-data he submitted to the selection committee was wrong.

George, a geologist, had allegedly claimed in his bio-data that he had worked as head of the department at a central university. It was, however, found out that he had worked only on deputation at the Central University at Kasargod.

The inquiry report declared his selection procedure ‘ab-initio void’ and recommended to the governor to nullify his appointments. Following the submission of the report to the then governor Nikhil Kumar, the vice-chancellor was called to depose before him, but before completing the action the former quit the office.

George had moved the high court on the issue, but it referred the matter back to the governor to take a decision. He had also moved the Supreme Court seeking the court’s intervention to prevent the governor from taking action.

The apex court dismissed his special leave petition observing that the governor, in her capacity as chancellor, had the authority to take action against vice-chancellors if fraud or any other illegality were committed while securing the appointment.

George told reporters that the allegations against him were incorrect. He accused the chief secretary of misleading the governor. He claimed that he had mentioned all facts regarding his qualifications correctly in his bio-data.

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