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Visva Bharati suspends three of its officials

Former officiating V-C amongst those expelled for tampering with documents

The Visva Bharati administration has suspended three officials, including former officiating vice-chancellor Sabujkali Sen, for allegedly tampering with a resolution of the university executive council meeting.

University officials said the decision was taken on Friday on the basis of the report of an inquiry committee set up to probe the allegations. The commission, led by Justice Jyotirmoy Bhattacharya, retired judge of the Calcutta High Court, looked into the matter. Along with Ms. Sen, action has been taken against former officiating registrar Sougata Chattopadhyay and ex-finance officer Samit Roy.

‘Vindictive attitude’

Ms. Sen told journalists in Shantiniketan that the action smacks of the “vindictive attitude” of some people against her. She added that said she will approach the courts over the issue.

The development comes at a time when the university set up by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore is embroiled in a controversy over erecting a boundary wall near the Poush Mela grounds.

Violence erupted at the university on August 17, when locals opposed to constructing the wall ransacked the university. Local Trinamool Congress leaders had joined the protesters who were also opposed to the University’s decision of not holding Poush Mela (winter carnival) this season.

‘Willing to hold Mela’

On Friday, the university gave hints that they are willing to organise the Mela this year with everyone’s cooperation. A press statement on Friday said the controversy over organising the Mela is unjust and the institute never wanted to stop organising the fair.

“It is our request to all those who are passionate about Shantiniketan to come forward and restore the old glory of Poush Mela. Come with an open mind,” the statement said. The National Green Tribunal has issued a series of recommendations for the organisers of the winter carnival to limit the pollution caused by it.

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