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First woman director of IIM Calcutta, Anju Seth, resigns

First woman director of IIM Calcutta, Anju Seth, resigns

March 23, 2021

The first woman director of the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, Anju Seth has resigned from her position on Sunday, March 21 after clash with the institute’s board of governors for several months.

Matters came to a head in end-February when the board adopted a resolution against her in a special meeting and reportedly started an inquiry into her “conduct”.

According to sources, Seth not only sent her resignation letter to the board of governors but also mailed a copy to the Prime Minister’s Office. An alumnus of its 1978 batch, Seth’s term was to end in February 2022 after she attained the age of 65. 

Following her resignation letter, an emergency meeting called by the board on March 22 but was later rescheduled to March 23.

As per sources, in her resignation letter, Seth referred to how the board chose to draw up allegations of wrongdoings against her without giving her a chance to defend herself which led to the breakdown of confidence between her and the board.

She has also pointed to the lack of transparency and accountability, cases of abdication of responsibility, weak financial health, misuse of funds as well as governance issues which had led to investigations by the education ministry as well as CAG and CVC.

As per reports, Seth fell out with the board chairman Srikrishna Kulkarni and had written to the education ministry complaining about the interference in her work which was restricting her from taking the institute forward.

The board has advertised for the post of a new director 11 months before Seth’s retirement when the IIMC norm is to initiate the process 9 months before the end of the tenure of the director.

The Board of Governors of IIM Calcutta met on March 24, 2021 to take note of the resignation letter of the Director, Prof. Anju Seth. The resignation was accepted with immediate effect. Prof. Subir Bhattacharya has been appointed as Director-in-charge. 

“It was regretted that at the time of leaving Prof. Anju Seth has made baseless and self-serving assertions against the Institute and the Board. IIM Calcutta will continue to be run in the best traditions of good governance and transparency.

The Board looks forward to working closely with the Ministry of Education, Faculty members, the staff, students, the alumni community and other stakeholders and friends of IIM Calcutta to take the Institute to greater heights,” the board said in a press release.

Also read:

Arvind Subramanian resigns as professor from Ashoka University

Pratap Bhanu Mehta resigns as Ashoka University professor

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