Cannot probe alleged misconduct of Mannar Jawahar if he is allowed to retire: university to High Court

If former Anna University vice-chancellor Mannar Jawahar is allowed to retire, the university would be precluded from taking any action against him. In that event, the university will be denied the right to probe his alleged misconduct.

The university has stated this in its counter before the Madras High Court to a writ petition by Dr. Jawahar, who had challenged an order of the university dated October 31, not permitting him to retire upon attaining the age of superannuation on that date.

In the counter, filed through counsel V.S. Sundar, the university registrar in-charge, S. Ganesan, said the petitioner assumed charge as V-C on June 27, 2008 and demitted office on June 26, 2012. In 2012, when he was the V-C, there were press reports about irregularities in the revaluation of answer scripts of the university students.

An enquiry committee was set up under the chairmanship of K. Kasthuri, a retired professor of the university. It submitted a report that a prima facie case had been made out and dishonest and unethical actions were uncovered involving the professor who was discharging the duty as Additional Controller of Examination, along with two other faculty members in the revaluation of mark sheets. Three faculty members were placed under suspension in September last year.

During enquiry into the irregularities, one of the faculty members deposed before the enquiry committee that Dr. Jawahar was the cause for all the discrepancies during revaluation of the exam papers. The government directed the university to take appropriate action against the petitioner. The communication also said the matter had been referred to the Department of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption.

As per the university statutes on disciplinary procedure, a person against whom an enquiry was pending for any of his official acts before the date of superannuation should be placed under suspension. Upon being intimated that the DVAC was enquiring into the matter, the petitioner was placed under suspension on October 28 this year, the counter said.