Pillai terms allegations against him baseless
New Delhi, Aug 6,2012 : Former IGNOU Vice Chancellor V N Rajasekharan Pillai has termed the CBI allegations against him of favouring two Universities as "absolutely baseless" and said the approvals given to these institutions were in accordance with the prevailing norms and procedures.
In an email message, he said the two Universities -- Sikkim Manipal University and Punjab Technical University -- were given sanction to run distance learning courses by the Distance Education Council (DEC) which has the legal authority to approve courses for recognised universities. "DEC has held several meetings after the approval and it has not raised any objection till date," he said.
The former Vice Chancellor, facing CBI probe, said the approval was given to the universities to run the courses in accordance with the prevailing norms and procedures. He said the controversy regarding the approval by the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) for distance education courses of Punjab Technical University and Sikkim Manipal University is unfortunate, misplaced and absolutely baseless.
"The allegations have been levelled by conveniently hiding the truth and glossing over the fundamental fact that both the universities are controlled by their respective state governments and are not in the private sector, as is being reported repeatedly," he said. He said these Universities are recognised by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and other statutory bodies in the government.
"All formalities required in this regard were done and the approval was given in line with the recommendations made by the inspection panels concerned. It was not the case of favouring those universities as due procedures and formalities were observed," he said. Pillai said all the assets belonging to him and his family have been made through legal means only.
"My earnings have come through holding different posts, in India and abroad during the last 41 years, from my retirement benefits as well as of my wife who recently retired as a University professor, from sale of my inherited properties, and income from my two children who are employed abroad," he said. He said he had given all required documents to the visiting officials in support of his contention.
In its FIR against Pillai and unknown office bearers of Sikkim Manipal University and Punjab Technical University, CBI has alleged that while functioning as Vice Chancellor of IGNOU and also the Chairman of Distance Education Council, he had abused his official position in granting approval for running courses in distance education mode, ignoring the deficiencies pointed out by the expert committee during 2009. The agency has filed an FIR naming him under section 120-B of IPC (criminal conspiracy) read with Section 13(2) (criminal misconduct by government official) read with 13(1)(d) of Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.