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29th "NRC-related" suicide in Assam, as Nirod Baran Das takes his life by hanging on a fan

By Our Representative
Reporting 29th case of National Register of Citizens (NRC)-driven suicide in Assam, one of India’s human rights campaign sites has said that, on October 20, tragedy struck Kharupetia town in Darrang district of Assam, when a retired school teacher and advocate Nirod Baran Das “took his life by hanging himself to a fan in his home.” The report adds, “The NRC process has so far claimed over two dozen such lives in the past four months alone.”

Accused of being RSS plant, Modi man, Hyderabad Urdu varsity chancellor asks President to probe "irregularities"

Counterview Desk
Refused entry in the Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU), the central university's newly appointed chancellor Firoz Bakht Ahmed, who claims to be grand nephew of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, has, in a letter to the President of India, said that MANUU vice-chancellor (V-C) Dr Aslam Parvaiz has accused him of being an RSS plant and a Modi man, whose sole aim is to "interfere in the working of the university".
Seeking an inquiry, Ahmed states in the letter that he has been threatened he would be derided among the Muslims of Hyderabad if he tries to take over. Accusing the V-C, of "indulging in corrupt and dishonest practices”, the letter adds, even the previous chancellor, Zafar Sareshwala, had in his report alleged the V-C was involved in "irregularities" and was thwarting "reforms" in the university's various departments.

Text of the letter:

I was appointed as the Chancellor of Maulana Azad National Urdu University (vide orders: {1} 27-15/2077-CU-l, Government of India, Ministry of Human Resource Development, dated May 17, 2018 and {2} MANUU CR-1/ F-19/ 2018-19-237). It is relevant to mention that the Chancellor by virtue of Statute 1 (1) and (2), Section 9 and 10 of the MANUU Act, is the first statuary officer and head of the university.
Hon’ble Sir, I wish to bring to your most esteemed attention that the university (under the present V-C, Dr Aslam Parvaiz) has become a victim of corruption, indolence and lack of transparency.
From the day, I had joined the august office of the Chancellor, I have been observing with great anxiety and concern that the institution has the powers of developing into a world class university but unfortunately, the VC, who should be a vibrant flag-bearer of this temple of learning, has been indulging in corrupt and dishonest practices. During my two visits for the purpose of reform, I felt concerned with the pathetic state of affairs of the university as it has become a victim of sleaze, sluggishness and lack of transparency.
I also gave many efficacious student-friendly suggestions, like — building a state of the art “Maulana Azad Center for Progressive Studies”, “Center for the Empowerment of Muslim Women”, establishment of an institute of international studies and foreign relations, initiation of lectures for the students on the message of communal concord by Maulana Azad by me and others authorities on the subject, inclusion on non-Urdu medium students to increase the number of students in the 200-acre huge campus with a condition of clearing the basic Urdu paper for better interfaith harmony and conglomeration of students of Urdu medium with those of different cultural backgrounds, initiation of a course for legal language and glossary for Urdu medium students, initiation of workshops and seminars for budding journalists, initiation of workshops and seminars on children’s Urdu literature, starting of a children’s Urdu monthly, Mahnama Bachchon ka Manuu, initiation of a meaningful machinery for redressing the grievances of the staff, students andkramacharis (workers), betterment in the facilities for the girls’ hostel, formation of a committee of the teachers and student office bearers for proper hygienic and affordable catering facilities in the only canteen that the MANUU has for the students (plea for more affordable and hygienic food canteens) and another committee to look after the sports activities — unfortunately, all of which were mercilessly thwarted by the V-C.
Firoz Bakht Ahmed
RIDER: Rather than welcoming these student-friendly recommendations, the V-C accused me to be an RSS plant and a Modi man to interfere in the working of the university threatening that he would deride me (which he has already done) among the Muslims of Hyderabad.
Most Esteemed Sir, I also questioned the V-C regarding the closure of Civil Services Academy opened by the previous Chancellor, Mr Zafar Sareshwala from where two candidates were selected in the IAS exams and the Deccan Studies Center being in a bad shape as per the reports.
As per the complaint made by the students regarding the ambience of dictatorship phobia and fear psychosis (under the garb of “discipline” to do away with any kind of dissent to carry on the corrupt activities unhindered) in the campus by the V-C and Pro V-C, it is a must that an inquiry is initiated to restore the friendly atmosphere between the students and the administration.
When, I, as the Chancellor, I tried to intervene, I was haughtily communicated that the Chancellor has no powers under the Act to guide the V-C and further, according to him, the Chancellor should not enter the campus except on the day of the Convention. Besides, he accused me of “enforcing the saffronized agenda being a Modi Man.” He dare not state that!
I feel it necessary and as my conscientious and bounteous duty to bring to your kind attention, the following aspects which have rusted the functioning of the glorious university:
1. Financial irregularities:
(a) In view of the large scale agitation of students regarding corruption in the university’s daily activities and appointments, a three member committee headed by Prof Suleiman Siddiqui was appointed by the outgoing Pro V-C. The Committee after due enquiry, submitted its report finding a prima facie case of misappropriation of huge amount of funds in the WiFi expenditure as well as printing — termed as scams by those who call a spade a spade. A CBI inquiry was recommended. However, the University is unconcerned and has been exonerating the culprits by dubious means through EC resolutions.
(b) There is no check on legality or regularity of expenditure by the University authorities. All the efforts at finding the financial processing which is secretive, are thwarted. Sleazy deals are the order of the day.
(c) This is a major reason, why Dr Aslam Parvaiz and Mr Shakeel Ahmad prefer to work with no experts or retired finance officers. A couple of months back, one Ms Lata Mallikarjuna a senior officer of IA & AS was brought as Finance Officer on deputation from AG Office but once when she started objecting to illegal expenditures, Dr Aslam Parvaiz and Mr Shakeel Ahmad conspired to send her back to the CAG office.
2. Illegal appointments galore:
(a) It has been stated by many people in Hyderabad that the MANUU has become the fulcrum of corruption and bhai-bhatijawad (illegal appointments of near and dear ones). The University is running with largely ineligible staff right from the Vice-Chancellor to lowest functionary. This is the longest scam streak of the University. The V-C and PVC are appointing their kith and kin and favourites in total disregard to rules and regulations.
(b) The outgoing PVC appointed a committee under Prof. Vijra for looking into irregularities in the appointments. But the committee was never allowed to function by Dr Aslam Parvaiz and Shakeel Ahmad for obvious reasons as the appointment of Aslam Parvaiz and Shakeel Ahmad are illegal themselves. This is a travesty!
(c) The outgoing PVC appointed a committee under Prof Vijra for looking into irregularities in the appointments. But the committee was never allowed to function by Dr Aslam Pervez and Shakeel Ahmad for obvious reasons as the appointment of Aslam Parvaiz and Shakeel Ahmad are illegal as follows:
(i) Dr Aslam Parvaiz: Dr Aslam Parvaiz is not eligible to hold the post of the Vice-Chancellor owing to the machinations he had used to promote himself to this post. One Mr Ghayasuddin Akbar had already filed a Writ Petition in the AP High Court in this regard which is pending. As per UGC rules and regulations, the minimum requirement for the appointment to the post of the Vice-Chancellor of a University is a minimum of ten years of experience as professor. Dr Aslam Parvaiz never worked as Professor. He was a Principal in an under graduate college, (Zakir Hussain College) of Delhi as follows:
(ii) Mr Shakeel Ahmad: Similarly, Mr Shakeel Ahmad who was first appointed as the Registrar was promoted to the post of the PVC and finally uplifted to the post of a professor of Economics. This has been a glaring example of extreme disregard to not only the rules and regulations in MANUU but the entire education system that was turned topsy-turvy but thanks mainly, the Vice-Chancellor who promoted his unqualified stooge — all in a short period of one year! As per the UGC regulations, the registrar should have at least 15 years of experience as lecturer or equivalent, The PVC should be a whole time professor of the same University and the professor should have a bare minimum 10 years teaching experience.
Mr Shakeel Ahmad has none of the above qualifications. He does not have a single day teaching experience but despite all that, he has been appointed as the professor. He started as a small time employee of the UGC and manipulated his way up to be the post of the joint secretary of the UGC through dubious means. He promoted himself as professor by forming the screening committee and selection committee (comprising of unconvinced and corrupt persons like Prof Akbar Ali Khan) to declare himself as outstanding.
His appointment is prima facie illegal. One Major Qadri has filed a Writ Petition against his appointment in the AP High Court which is still pending. The word is in the air that it is not Dr Aslam Parvaiz, the Vice-Chancellor, who is running the MANUU but Mr Shakeel Ahmad who is managing the show for which, he has been rewarded unlawfully by being uplifted to the status of a professor. Besides, owing to his connections in the UGC (University Grants Commission and MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development), Mr Shakeel has been batting for his Vice-Chancellor in these places!
(d) Following three people as well have been the sweeping examples of mismanagement and illegality in appointments by the present MANUU regime. They were selected in spite of the fact that none of the above three candidates possessed the prescribed qualification. The University itself admitted before AP High Court that they were appointed in relaxation of the qualification. Whereas the University has no power of relaxation.
(i) Mohd. Yusuf Khan: Principal, Polytechnic, Main campus,
(ii) Abdul Muqsit Khan: Principal, Polytechnic, Darbhanga, and
(iii) Md. Riyazur Rahman: Principal, polytechnic Bangalore Regional Center.
(e) The saga of these illegal and unqualified appointments continues with more examples. It fact such appointments are unabated as some of the following examples:
(i) Dr Bonthu Kotaiah: He has been appointed as the assistant professor and has been working in the University in spite of the fact that he was rejected by Hyderabad University for the same post as being ineligible.
(ii) Abdul Wahid: He is appointed as professor and is now working as the Dean, School of Computer Sciences and Information Technology, but his name was also rejected for appointment as the professor in Himachal University, being ineligible.
(iii) Consultants: More than fifteen (15) consultants, who have been the favourites of Dr Aslam Parvaiz and Shakeel Ahmad, were appointed in the University on contract basis without an advertisement and interview or selection process which the university itself admitted in an RTI request.
(iv) Some consultants like, Mr Anis Azmi, who is reported to be the V-C’s brother-in-law, has been even receiving the professor grade salary. For a similar recruitment of consultants. Incidentally, in a similar case of illegal appointments at IK Gujral University in Punjab, the V-C and his consorts, were arrested.
(v) Appointment of general candidates in reserved category: One Md Yusuf was appointed assistant professor in Polytechnic too was appointed against in the “Backward Class” reserved category. Interestingly, the university is refusing to part with his caste certificate.
(vi) Md Hashim Ali Sajid: His is a classic case of manipulation of the system of appointments. Firstly, he was appointed as assistant registrar in spite of the fact that he did not possess the prescribed 55 percent marks. Presently, he has been appointed as a direct deputy registrar without any vacancy and without any notification in return for all his “services".
(vii) Prof. Mohd. Akbar Ali Khan: He was earlier the V-C of Telangana University, Nizamabad and had been appointed as additional director, DDE without any notification or advertisement or selection process. The case becomes far more severe as he had been charged under stark cases of corruption and misconduct by the state government of Telangana and the university has decided to file an FIR against him while the state Government has written to remove him.
3. Fear psychosis and fascist attitude
(a) All the staff, both academic and non-academic, are living in a state of terror because of the V-C and PV-C who, as per their whims and fancies, are resorting to disciplinary action and transfers with a feeling of vengeance and punishment to any person who tries to raise his voice calling a spade a spade. What is sad is that for the purpose of punishment, they are resorting to concoctions, forgery and frauds for example in the case of Md Shaheer Zaman, the EC met on September 07, 2017 and framed unfounded charges on the basis of a letter from M J College which was issued and received by the University on September 12, 2017.
Dr Aslam Parvez
(b) The number of transfers made by the University are phenomenal. The V-C and PV-C require to explain whether any University in India has done even one tenth of this number of transfers and why they have to do it. The travesty is that they are allowing the transfers of those close to them and are refusing genuine cases.
(c) Since most of these transfers and punishments are with wicked intentions, large number of cases are filed in the High Court and the University has been spending huge amount defending these suits and save their faces.
4. Harassment of females:
(a) The V-C and P.V-C have been harassing women professors and staff for obvious reasons. One senior professor Salma Farooqui who was divested of her legally appointed position in a Centre, was compelled to file Writ Petition in the High Court which is still pending as the university is not filing counters. She was defamed publicly on the university website and in national newspapers. Life for female students has also been miserable in the university. The girls’ hostel facilities are all haywire. Sufficient material is available on the internet about the treatment of female students at MANUU. Several female students shall spill the beans if any confidential enquiry is conducted.
5. Students harassment:
(a) Dr Aslam Parvaiz and Mr Shakeel Ahmad are also harassing students and getting false police cases foisted against them, withholding their scholarships and refusing to permit filing of thesis by them besides throwing them out of the hostels. One student by the name, Basit Naik, has filed a case against MANUU in the Human Rights Commission, Hyderabad. It requires to be explained as to why so many cases are being filed in the university and if the university is right, why the university is not filing reply in even a single case. There too, it is an impasse.
(b) Some students, who had won the students’ election, confided in me that there was the ambience of dictatorship in the university and also complained that the attitude of the V-C is rather atrocious.
It is an ineluctable necessity, Most Exalted Sir, that in terms of the provisions of Section 8 of the MANUU Act 1996, you appoint your representatives to review the work and the progress of the university and get an inspection done of the various departments/ centers of the university. Not everything connected with the administration and finances of the university is going in the right direction as per the documentation and feelers, I have continuously been receiving. I take the liberty to inform you that the earlier Chancellor had also in his report ensured and reported the Vice Chancellor for his irregularities and acts of commission and omission. I hope you will take the much awaited action. If possible do give men time to meet you, Sir.

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