Saturday, October 30, 2010

JEE Scam: Despite Warning, Institute Ruled Out Probe Into Bungling In JEE

IT-Kgp ignored CVC advice way back in '07
2006 JEE Scam: Despite Warning, Institute Ruled Out Probe Into Bungling In JEE
Akshay Mukul, TNN, October 28, 2010
NEW DELHIThough the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) had forwarded allegations about malpractices in JEE-2006 to Damodar Acharya, director of IIT-Kharagpur, way back in 2007, the institute did not feel the need to order a probe. Instead, IIT Kharagpur told the HRD ministry that "as per conduct rule of the institute no employee is permitted to publish any article anonymously or in the name of any other person to any newspaper or periodical." 

The then registrar D Gunasekaran was referring to the source material that was the basis of allegation about the bungling in JEE-2006. To make matters worse, IIT-Kharagpur also did not inform — as was unearthed later — the ministry that the JEE answer sheets and other materials were already destroyed in 2006. 
Gunasekaran said action be taken against the author of the source material. TOI reported last week how Prof A K Ghosh, who was then the chairperson of IIT-JEE, Kharagpur, had sought permission for shredding of JEE papers in 2006. Ghosh was also Chief Vigilance Officer of the institute. Early this year, Ghosh in a reply to an RTI query even stated, "During my tenure as CVO of IIT, Kharagpur I haven't received any queries from CVC regarding irregularities in JEE 2006." 
The source material forwarded by CVC had alleged that there were many cut-off procedures submitted by IIT-Kharagpur, but none of which could calculate stated cut-off marks due to a slew of discrepancies. For instance, many high scoring candidates failed to make the grade while many with lower scores, strangely, got selected. Irregularities came to the fore regarding manual corrections and tampering of chemistry scripts, andchildren of IIT administrators scoring high marks. 
IIT-Kharagpur has been averse to the Right to Information Act as is evident from this entire episode. Even last month, when asked to supply all communications along with the action taken report and file notings, in deference to all communications received by IIT-Kharagpur from CVC and CVO/MHRD, A Patra, principal information officer of the institute, asked RTI applicant Rajeev Kumar, "If you desire to have information regarding proceedings of CVC, CVO/MHRD, against individuals and the ATR thereon, would you explain why such information are required in larger public interest." 
Section 6(2) of RTI Act 2005 clearly states, "An applicant making request for information shall not be required to give any reason for requesting the information."
industan Times :: 30 October 2010
Ex-chiefs involved in IIT scam, says prof  
Charu Sudan Kasturi, Hindustan Times
New DelhiOctober 30, 2010
The Indian Institute of Technology-Kharagpur professor under police investigation for running an unauthorised institute that duped students using the IIT brand and campus has accused two former IIT-K directors of sanctifying the fraud institution. The former directors — Kasturi Lal Chopra and  Shishir Kumar Dube — were not just aware of the fraud Institute of Electrical Engineers but independently encouraged it, accused professor Amit Kumar Ghosh claimed to HT on Friday.  Both Chopra and Dube rejected the charges.
Hindustan Times first exposed (on October 19) the scam involving the IEE — with Ghosh as president — running from the IIT Kharagpur campus and claiming links to the prestigious first IIT. Since the expose, sections of the IIT community have been questioning how Ghosh could have run the IEE without the knowledge of senior administrators.
"The impression that I alone ran this institute is totally untrue. I joined and worked as honorary president only because of the legitimacy awarded by people like Chopra and Dube," Ghosh said, in his first detailed comments since the scam was exposed.
"Several IIT faculty are also involved in setting question papers for the institute." Ghosh said he had informed the police about the involvement of the "others" in the IEE. Chopra, Director of IIT-K between 1987 and 1997, wrote to the IEE stating the IIT was "affiliating" the institute now under a cloud, Ghosh claimed. "This is a most ridiculous charge. I had not even heard of IEE till the scam was exposed in the news media," Chopra told HT.
"I am shocked Ghosh is making such allegations." Chopra is a celebrated scientist, who also heads the Society for Scientific Values, a non-government watchdog against scientific malpractices.
Dube, who was Director of the IIT between 2002 and 2007, agreed – in a written letter – to act in an advisory role to assist the IEE, Ghosh said.
"I cannot imagine why Ghosh would level such allegations. I may have heard about something to do with the institute (IEE) but how can an IIT Director agree to advise a private entity?" Dube said.
Times of India :: 30 October 2010
Padma awardee part of fake institute run by IIT-Kgp prof
Akshay Mukul, TNN, October 30, 2010
NEW DELHI: The tale of the fake institute promoted by IIT-Kharagpur teachers is getting curosier by the day. Documents in possession of TOI shows that two former directors — K L Chopra and S K Dube — were patronising theInstitution of Electrical Engineers (India) (IEE)(I).
K L Chopra, a former director of IIT-Kharagpur and Padma Shri awardee, ironically, heads the Society for Scientific Values that promotes ethics and holds a slew of other exalted posts. He is the chairman of Board of Governors, NIT, Bhopal; and an adviser to the Jaypee Group.
As a director of IIT-Kharagpur between 1987 and 1997, Chopra went to the extent of certifying that "syallabi of the Associate Membership Examination of the Institution of Electrical Engineers are accepted at par with electrical engineering degree ie BE/B Tech, thus it is recognized compositively and affiliated professionally by the IIT, Kharagpur, under the authorized signatory of director, IIT, Kharagpur and being an adviser of the IEE." Chopra said graduate of IEE is "authorized and eligible to appear in GATE examination for an admission in M Tech/MS."
Incidentally, this letter was written on December 24, 1996, and a few days later — on January 17, 1997 — Chopra accepted the offer to become an adviser to IEE (I).
Post retirement, he went on to occupy another plum position. He became vice-chairperson of the All India Council for Technical Education, the regulating body for private technical/management institutes in the country. Chopra, however, denies these allegations, claiming that the documents are forged. "I have no idea. This is very shocking. A K Ghosh (now suspended) is naming everybody because he is involved. I will never do such a thing," he told ToI.
Dube, as director of IIT-Kharagpur, also wrote to J K Tewari, head of IEE (I), in 2003, stating that he is looking "forward for the great cooperation between our institute (IIT) and IEE (I) in various fields of science and engineering".
Another letter of commendation to IEE (I) came from J C Biswas of department of electronics and electrical communication engineering in IIT-Kharagpur. His letter of commendation clearly mentions association between faculty of IIT-Kharagpur and IEE (I).
Hindustan Times :: 23 October 2010
IIT-KGP 'tainted' prof details seeked
Charu Sudan Kasturi, Hindustan Times
New DelhiOctober 22, 2010
The human resource development ministry has asked the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, for an explanation over allegations that a senior professor used the IIT campus and brand to run an institute offering invalid degrees. HT had first reported on October 19 about police investigations against IIT Kharagpur aerospace engineering professor Amit Kumar Ghosh for running the fake institute — called the Institute ofElectrical Engineers — as president.
But fresh documents available with HT suggest that Ghosh also had a cover-up route ready — thanks to the post of Chief Vigilance Officer that the IIT bestowed on him. The CVO is an institution’s chief watchdog against corruption and Ghosh was effectively in charge of stopping crimes like the running of the IEE at the time he was himself allegedly duping innocent students into joining the fake institute.
IIT Kharagpur also allowed Ghosh to jointly hold the CVO post and the post of chairman IIT Joint Entrance Examination when the test was under the scanner from late 2006 over allegations that deserving candidates were denied seats.
This conflict of interest, coupled with the shocking new revelations about Ghosh, have triggered fresh concerns among faculty, parents and independent transparency seekers about the credibility of the IIT’s internal probe into allegations of admission wrongdoing in 2006.
“The charges against Ghosh are so severe that they force one to question the credibility of the probe into the 2006 fiasco,” said a senior professor who has been campaigning for years for greater transparency in the conduct of IIT-JEE.
Ghosh took over as IIT-JEE 2007 chairman after the controversial 2006 examination in which 994 deserving candidates were denied seats because the IITs violated their own selection process. But Ghosh, as JEE Chairman, was personally involved in tackling allegations that arose after the 2006 examination, documents available with HT confirm. As JEE chairman, he oversaw the destruction of answer scripts of the 2006 examinations in December. One of the key allegations that year surrounded charges that chemistry answer scripts had been tampered post examination – a charge that cannot be proved or disproved now because the answer scripts have been destroyed.

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