Assam Governor removes suspended Dibrugarh University VC from office over corruption charges

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The committee was instructed to ensure that the petitioner was given an opportunity to refute the allegations made against him.
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Assam Governor removes suspended Dibrugarh University VC from office
Dibrugarh University VC

Guwahati: The governor of Assam Prof. Jagdish Mukhi removed Prof. Ranjit Tamuli from his position as vice-chancellor of Dibrugarh University with immediate effect on Monday.

Prof. Tamuli has been on suspension since February due to charges of serious financial irregularities and misuse of public funds.

According to the notification from the Governor’s Secretariat, the governor issued the order for his removal in his capacity as Chancellor of Dibrugarh University.

The order was given after the governor accepted a revised inquiry report submitted by a high-level committee formed by him to investigate the claims, and the submissions made by Prof. Tamuli in his defence were rejected, official said.

As per a Gauhati High Court order on June 4, 2021, the committee which was formed on February 24 and submitted its report a month later had reconducted the investigation.

After Tamuli approached the panel, the court urged it to reopen its investigation.

The committee was instructed to ensure that the petitioner was given an opportunity to refute the allegations made against him.

According to the latest order from the Governor’s Secretariat, the revised inquiry report was presented on September 20 and concluded that the claims and charges levelled against Tamuli “are proved” based on “oral and documentary evidence.”

Former Gauhati High Court Justice Indira Shah led the high-level committee, which included member secretary Prof. MP Bezbaruah of Gauhati University and member Dilip Kumar Dutta, Senior Accounts Officer (retd) of the Office of Principal Accountant General.

The committee had looked into financial transactions and allegations of corruption, indiscipline, misuse of funds, and powers of the University during the last five years.

It had also focused on the Governor’s complaints in January this year from the Dibrugarh University Teachers’ Association, Dibrugarh University Officers’ Association, Dibrugarh University Employees’ Association and Lahowal’s then-MLA Rituparna Baruah, as well as the report of a two-member Fact-Finding Committee formed in February.

The inquiry was expanded to include all aspects of Dibrugarh University’s management, including financial concerns spanning the previous five years.

The Governor established the fact-finding committee on February 2 after being dissatisfied with Tamuli’s explanation of the allegations levelled against him by several sources a month earlier.

Meanwhile, on February 8, this committee submitted its report, and on that basis, as well as other facts and materials on file, the Governor suspended Prof. Tamuli on February 11 and appointed a high-level panel to investigate the allegations further.

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