With the government passing a report submitted by Chief Secretary E K Bharat Bhushan recommending action against Dr A V George, vice-chancellor, MG University, to the Governor, it looks likely that the VC would face music. Although it is the discretion of the Governor, who is the chancellor of the University, whether to initiate action against the VC, cases pending against him in the court and additional chief secretary’s report on VC’s salary, which point towards fund misappropriation, are expected to put him on the spot.
It looks as if the anti-VC group would leave no stone unturned to push A V George out of power. They have decided to cash in on the remarks of the High Court against George on a case related to the suspension of University registrar M R Unni and the observations in a government report on the controversial decisions made by the University syndicate held on August 3, 2013, regarding re-designating two joint-registrars and the VC fixing his own salary. It is learnt that they have already submitted a petition to chancellor, in regard to fund misappropriation and misbehaviour.
The group hopes that the VC would be removed or action taken against him by bringing to light the serious irregularities committed by him. “It seems that the Governor cannot delay his decision by more than three weeks, as the legality of George’s appointment is being reviewed by the court,” said a top University official.
If the Governor launches an inquiry against the VC, the government’s report on the VC would assume significance. The report states that, “drawing salary without obtaining requisite orders sanctioning the same will amount to misappropriation of funds and diversion of the grant-in-aid given to the University under the Kerala Financial Code”.
According to the University Act, a VC can be removed if charges of misbehaviour or misappropriation of funds are proved. In M R Unni’s case, the High Court single bench had observed that the VC had misused or abused his powers in suspending M R Unni. Further, the division bench of the HC found that the VC had, on flimsy grounds, passed the suspension order. It observed that the circumstances clearly indicate that the VC was interested in harassing the petitioner and somehow keep him out of office.
According to the Act, the chancellor should initiate an inquiry led by a sitting or retired High Court judge. The anti-VC group has already brought these charges before the chancellor. However, since the second option would be time consuming they hope that the first option works.