Since report of deregistration of Jamia Millia Islamia research scholar Dhrupadi Ghosh surfaced, the university administration and student group Dayar-I-Shauq Students’ Charter (DISSC) have been involved in clearing their stand. Just a day after the university administration released an official version, the students too have responded to it calling it half baked and opaque responses, continuing their demand for immediate reinstatement of Dhrupadi’s enrollment.
The students have alleged that she has been targeted for “campus activism” a claim rubbished by the administration. The administration has continued to maintain that the decision has nothing to do with Ghosh’s activism. “It was totally based on technical grounds. Her Master’s subject was not allied with her PhD subject,” a senior varsity official said, reported a national daily.
Responding to the university release, DISSC said: “Five days after Ghosh received an extremely brief office Order, summarily cancelling her admission without citing any reason or giving her an opportunity to defend her work, the administration has come up with a public statement justifying its decision.
“Unfortunately, the response, issued in the name of the university PRO is both vague and opaque and strangely self-congratulatory. It sheds absolutely no light on why a research scholar, who was admitted only after due process, whose work has been approved by the Board off Studies the highest academician body in the university, whose PhD supervisor is completely satisfied with her academic process, can be just thrown out of the programme after two years.
“It calls “malicious” the desperate efforts made by the ousted and PhD scholar to find out the grounds on which her admission was cancelled. One wonders if this is anything less than institutional harassment. In fact, the hastily put together statement raises more questions than it answers.
“The PRO statement, however, does not clarify what this “basic eligibility criteria” is. Why did the university called Ghosh for an interview two years back if she had not fulfilled the eligibility criteria?
“How did she clear not one, but two interview boards? (Ghosh was offered a PhD programme in two departments, Sociology and Social Exclusion – she chose Sociology)
“How is it that the Board of Studies, comprising eminent academics, approved her work? How is it that her guide, a sociologist of impeccable reputation, was completely satisfied with her academic progress?
“Why is the university so blasé about the fact that the scholar has spent two full years of her life immersed in her research which is now being taken away from her?
“Why was no reason cited for her dismissal? Why was she not given the opportunity to defend her work as dictated not only by the rule book, but the principles of natural justice and common human decency?
“It should be noted that it was a duly constituted Board of Studies, with internal faculty members, external experts and eminent sociologists that interviewed Ghosh and only on finding her credentials and performance in the interview satisfactory offered her admission.
“It however does not mention any names of who have been issued the show cause. What are their responses? Who conducted the enquiry? Has the enquiry been completed? Why was the penalised scholar not called before this enquiry body (assuming, of course, that such a body was duly formed in the first place)? Why is the enquiry report (or any other information) not shared with the scholar?
“The fact remains that it is the scholar, Ghosh, is the only one being penalised here. The PRO’s statement only adds insult to injury and contributes to her continuing institutional harassment.
“The entire student community, particularly the research scholars are in a state of shock and insecurity over this arbitrary cancellation. We urge the university to share all relevant information with the victimised scholar, admit its mistake and revoke the unjust PhD deregistration order.”
A day earlier, the university has released its official statement that was carried by OT.COM.
It said: “The wrong and malicious information is being circulated at various fora including social media regarding cancellation of Phd admission in Sociology of Ms Dhrupadi Ghosh . The University hereby clarifies the factual position.
“In order to streamline the Phd admissions in general an exercise has been undertaken by Dean office to scrutinise Phd admissions in various departments.
“The admission of the candidate has been found to be in violation of the statutory norms of the University. The matter has been referred to competent authority for assesment. A three member committee including an outside expert was appointed by the Vice Chancellor to review the admission and the issue of eligibility. The committee examined the case and found that the candidate doesn’t fulfill the basic eligibility criteria required for Phd admission in Sociology. The report of the committee has been accepted by the competent authority and concerned Dean has been requested for taking necessary action and those who were responsible for this wrong admission has also been issued show cause notices.”