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Today Date : Friday, April 12, 2024

Periyar University Vice Chancellor arrested amid allegations of irregularities and misconduct

Periyar University Vice Chancellor arrested amid allegations of irregularities and misconduct

Salem's Periyar University Vice Chancellor, Prof Dr. R. Jaganathan, was apprehended on Tuesday evening by the Karuppur station police. The arrest follows a series of accusations concerning various irregularities plaguing the institution.
Over recent times, Periyar University has been steeped in controversies surrounding alleged malpractices and administrative shortcomings. Dr. R. Jaganathan, the Vice-Chancellor, found himself at the center of allegations raised by both the Association of University Teachers (TAU) and the Periyar University Employees Union (PUEU). Notably, Dr. Jaganathan was implicated as a founding promoter of the Periyar University Technology Entrepreneurship and Research (PUTER) Foundation, a commercial company initiated in September, a move that apparently violated regulations barring government employees from direct involvement in profit-centric ventures. Mr. K Thangavel, Registrar (Incharge) and two other professors are also said to be active promotors in PUTER.
Further scrutiny revealed that PUTER was granted substantial space—over 2000 square feet—within the university premises for its CEO's office without due authorization from the government or presentation before the Syndicate for approval. Additionally, accusations surfaced regarding agreements made with external entities, allegedly resulting in substantial financial losses for the university but personal gains for the officials.
Mr. Illangovan, the Legal Advisor of PUEU, filed a comprehensive complaint against the Vice Chancellor and his associates at the Karuppur Police Station within Salem City Police jurisdiction, detailing the alleged misconduct. Subsequently, the police initiated an investigation based on the prima facie evidence and took Dr. R. Jaganathan into custody at the University campus on Tuesday evening. He is set to undergo judicial remand, as confirmed by police sources.
Adding fuel to the fire, recent actions by the Vice Chancellor, including issuing a memorandum to Dr. Subramani, a professor at the Department of Journalism, demanding an explanation for publishing a book related to social reformer Thandhai Periyar, had drawn widespread criticism. This arrest has, therefore, sparked immense reactions among students, professors, and the general public, intensifying the ongoing scrutiny of the institution and raising questions about the governance and integrity of one of Salem's prominent academic institutions.