Reportedly, Sunil Pande, working as associate professor since May 1, 1998, was found guilty on two counts of administrative and financial irregularities by two separate probe panels.
“The panels, constituted after receiving complaints from research fellows and even from RGBC non-teaching staff, were headed by head of NU’s chemistry department — HD Juneja and principal of NU’s Dr Ambedkar Law College — Shrikant Komawar,” registrar Puran Meshram informed.
The university has instituted a departmental enquiry (DE) against the lecturer, who was working as director for ‘Environmental and Agricultural Biotechnology’ and ‘Molecular Genetics and Medical Biotechnology’ branches. He also worked as HoD of RGBC for a brief period after regular incumbent Sudhir Meshram assumed the charge of vice-chancellor of North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon.
“The DE would be conducted by lawyer Yogesh Dharshivkar and we would soon issue terms of reference. Pande has been suspended so as to prevent any interference in the enquiry. After the DE report, NU will take a call on whether to lodge a police complaint or not. But with the kind of findings by both probe panels, Pande is prima facie guilty of administrative irregularities and financial bunglings worth lakhs and deserves hefty penalty,” Meshram said.
NU had set up probe committees after receiving complaint from research fellow with RGBC Kashmira Parihar, whose fellowship payment of Rs2.16 lakh was stopped by Pande. After Parihar filed the complaint, Pande sacked her from the RGBC and appointed his close associate Shailesh Dupare in her place without seeking VC Siddharthavinayaka Kane’s consent, ToI reported.