BANGALORE: The State Government on Monday placed before the Karnataka High Court, records of the Chancellor of Bangalore University ordering an inquiry against Prof. Venkataramannappa for alleged plagiarism of his doctoral thesis.
A Division Bench comprising Justice Chidananda Ullal and Justice Nagmohan Das, had on the last hearing, directed the State Government to procure and place before it records of the Chancellor directing a panel to look into the complaint of plagiarism. Mr. Venkataramannappa, a professor of Bangalore University, had appealed against a single judge order refusing to interfere with the inquiry ordered by the Chancellor against him.
He said he was awarded a doctorate in 2002 for his work on ‘Small farmers in Karnataka—a sociological study’. However, some persons who had a grouse against him complained that the doctoral thesis was plagiarised. On February 13, 2003, the university referred the thesis to the Institute for Social and Economic Change (ISEC), Bangalore, for its opinion. The institute sent its opinion to the university, which then constituted a three-member commission of experts to look into the issue. The committee, he said, rejected the charge of plagiarism. Subsequently, the Chancellor appointed a committee on August 30, 2006, to go into the issue. Mr. Venkataramannappa had appealed to the High Court against the constitution of the committee and also urged it to restrain the panel from going ahead with the inquiry. Rejecting the petition, a single judge had said the matter required detailed clarification and since this is a finding of a fact, it can be done only by a commission. He said the petitioner, instead of participating in the inquiry, had rushed to the courtMr. Venkataramannappa had filed an appeal against the single judge order. Advocate-General Uday Holla said the Chancellor’s action in ordering an inquiry is as per law. He urged the court to dismiss the appeal seeking a stay of the single judge order. The Bench adjourned further hearing on the case.