DU college victimises whistle-blower

A lab assistant at the Institute of Home Economics found the college authorities involved in financial irregularities

danish

Danish Raza | January 13, 2011



The ministry of human resources development (MHRD) has initiated a probe to investigate the charges of fund embezzlement filed against The Institute of Home Economics (IHE), a women's college affiliated to Delhi university.

In 1999, IHE rented out a portion of its building to a private institute for conducting courses in fashion technology.

It has turned out that the monthly rent received from the institute, used to get transferred into the account of the college trust. However, the annual account of the college, a report of which goes to the UGC, does not reflect the rent amount.

For the first year (starting June 9, 1999), the college gave 2, 000 square feet of land to the institute on a rent Rs 1 lakh per month. Next year, an additional 2, 000 square feet was rented out and the rent amount was increased to Rs 1.7 lakh per month.

The information was obtained by Satish Kumar, a lab assistant in the college.

In June 2010, Kumar filed RTI application in the college asking for details of the rent received from the private institute. In response the college provided him with documents which showed that the rent was being transferred into the trust which was running the college.

Kumar said that within two hours of him filing the RTI query, the college authorities removed the neon boards of the private institute which were hanging on the walls of the college building.

But he had called for trouble.

After around 10 days of filing the application, Kumar said, S Malhan, former principal of the college and a current member of the governing council, called him requesting to stay away from the matter.

"She said that she would give me whatever amount of money I wanted," Kumar told Governance Now.

Though he got the reply of the RTI query within 30 days, the college authorities have been threatening him with his job.

According to him, Deepak Pental, former V-C of Delhi university and the university grants commission have tried to cover- up the fraud.

"They forwarded my complaint to the college principal asking for her reaction. They got the reaction. But instead of probing the matter, they forwarded the college's response to me."

In the response to the varsity's V-C and the UGC, the college said that the college was managed by the trust and that the trust had paid for 50 percent of the money for the construction of college building.

Kumar then filed RTI application with the UGC asking if the annual accounts report of the college, submitted with the UGC, had a mention of the money received through rent.

"UGC informed me that there was never any mention of the rent money," said he.

Kumar has also written to the central vigilance commission, the prime minister's office and the MHRD on the issue.

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