The Supreme Court on Tuesday quashed the Karnataka High Court division bench’s order invalidating the appointment of Bangalore University vice chancellor, Prof KR Venugopal, hence reinstating him to the top post of the varsity. Venugopal was represented by Anitha Shenoy in the SC. Previously, an order by the Karnataka High Court in March 2022 had quashed his appointment as the VC citing discrepancies over concurrence between the governor and government regarding his appointment and allegations over procession of fake caste certificate.
In an interview with EducationWorld over the controversy that dates to 2018, when a single bench of the high court had issued a judgement against his appointment, Venugopal, who feels vindicated alleges that this was a ploy, meant to defame him.
On return to his office in Bengaluru on Wednesday, Venugopal was welcomed with garlands amid cheers from a small group of supporters, mostly members of the non-teaching staff association members who indulged in a low-key celebration.
With just days left for his retirement, Venugopal vents that there are entities who want to defame him and create challenges in the way of discharging his duties as the VC.
“Why does the controversy become so rife with two months left for my retirement? People want to ensure I hold no other post thereafter. This is an attempt to defame me,” he alleges.
“I have been associated with Bangalore University for 48 years,” he begins, claiming that in his entire career, where he was also previously the principal of UVCE, a government-run engineering college, there have been no allegations over financial misappropriations ever. “Now that there is no financial fraud to pin on me, subjective issues such as poor administration are being raked.”
He also seeks to know how several government documents clarifying his caste in the past as well have been dismissed. “The SC sought to know why caste certificate was even a matter of relevance in this issue. If I do not belong to the caste that my caste certificate indicates, I wish someone would tell me which caste I belong to. Infact, why not tell me which sect I belong to?” he questions.
Venugopal also says that there have been consistent efforts to disallow him from functioning since the day of his appointment as the CV. “From the day I took charge, I have been tortured. I did not raise my voice against it. I don’t allow corruption and they do not want that. I have held so many posts, is there a single financial misappropriation? For the last 2 years I have been harassed and not allowed to discharge my duties. The fact that I introduced 40 new courses, allocated lands to the Council of Architecture, NAAC, CBSE and more for development should speak about my way of working,” he concludes.News, States