Centre considering ‘action’ in DU power struggle, but VC not removed yet

VC Tyagi’s Registrar appointee writes to Ministry after Centre backs Pro VC Joshi, says decisions taken as per varsity statutes

The Centre is considering “strict action” against the Delhi University Vice Chancellor Yogesh Tyagi, but has not yet moved to seek his permanent removal, according to senior Education Ministry officials.

DU has been grappling with a power tussle between the senior most functionaries appointing different officials as Registrars of the varsity. On Thursday, the Ministry had written to the university, intervening in the spat over P.C. Jha’s appointment as Registrar by Prof. Tyagi, who is currently on medical leave.

The Ministry’s letter had backed Pro Vice Chancellor P.C. Joshi, who has been the acting VC, and his appointee Vikas Gupta as Registrar instead.

The Ministry stated that Prof Tyagi’s orders issued during his absence were not valid, and added that, “In future, if the Vice Chancellor wants to join the office, proper medical fitness certificate issued by the competent authority who treated him may be obtained.”

A meeting was held in the Ministry on Friday, to discuss the ongoing power struggle and other administrative issues at DU.

Following the meeting, when asked what further action the Ministry was taking, officials said that “strict action is being contemplated”. However, when asked whether Prof. Tyagi was being removed, officials said this was “not yet” being done.

Earlier on Friday, Prof. Jha wrote to the Education Ministry stating that appointments made by Prof. Tyagi were in compliance with relevant ordinances of the varsity.

In his letter to the Ministry, Prof. Jha wrote, “It is informed that Professor P.C. Jha, in addition to his responsibilities as Director of South Campus, is acting as Registrar of University of Delhi, as an interim arrangement. It is also informed that Dr. Geeta Bhatt has been appointed as Pro Vice Chancellor in place of Professor P.C. Joshi.”

“VC Yogesh K. Tyagi has taken decisions in due compliance with the Act, Statutes and Ordinances of Delhi University,” the letter read.

The VC’s office also complained that Prof. Tyagi’s appointee Dr. Bhatt was unable to access the official email address of the Pro Vice Chancellor as the password had been changed on Thursday night.

A Friday email from an official in the VC’s office to the director of the University Computer Centre demanded that the password be conveyed to Dr. Bhatt and that the “fake press release” put on the DU website in the name of the Registrar be removed.

That release was issued late on Thursday night by Registrar Gupta, whose appointment Prof. Joshi had notified earlier in the day. “It is hereby clarified that professor PC Joshi, Pro VC will act as VC and is the only competent authority to approve or issue orders as per the provisions of the [DU] Act, statutes and ordinances of the university. Any notification or orders issued without the due approval of P.C. Joshi are null and void,” the communication read.


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