Mumbai University Pro-Vice Chancellor has termed Professor
Neeraj Hatekar’s suspension as legal on the ground that it was unanimously
passed by the Management Council (MC).
However, Hatekar has claimed that his suspension was illegal
and that, as per regulations prescribed under the Maharashtra Universities Act,
1994, the power of suspending a teacher is given only to the management council
MU Pro-VC, Naresh Chandra has claimed that a unanimous
decision was passed by the MC on December 20 to take strict action against the
professor, and action was taken as per the Act.
Hatekar had called a press conference on December 12 in his
capacity as convener of the ‘Joint Action Committee for the Improvement of
Higher Education in Maharashtra’, in which he had pointed out 16 issues
plaguing the university, and demanded an immediate solution for improving the
educational standards of the Mumbai University. He was suspended on January 4.
Hatekar has maintained that a resolution must be passed by
the MC for suspending a teacher and as no such resolution was passed, the
action of the vice-chancellor to suspend him was not legal.
“His suspension was decided upon only after a meeting of the
management council on December 20. The members asked the officers to tell the
truth in the allegations made by Hatekar and that if anybody is found guilty,
then the university should take action against that person. After getting an
explanation from university officers, they took a serious view of the matter
and a unanimous resolution was passed by the management council. They said the
people who have tarnished the university’s image should be dealt with strictly.
Except for one member, all recommended a suspension,” said Rajpal Hande,
Director, Board of College and University Development (BCUD), Mumbai
“Suspension is not a punishment, it implies that necessary
procedures will be followed as mentioned in the Act and inquiry will be
conducted. Subsequently, we will decide on the further course of action. The
allegation by him (Hatekar) that university authorities are trying to settle
personal scores with him are baseless,” said Chandra, reported Indian Express.