Monday, 11 July 2016

New feather in the cap of "Institute of National Shame" The authors have agreed to the retraction.

Retraction Note To: Appl Microbiol Biotechnol (2002) 60:33–44
DOI: 10.1007/s00253-002-1062-0
The article has been retracted at the request of the Editor-in-Chief, as it contains portions of other authors’ writings on the same topic in other publications, without sufficient attribution to these earlier works being given. The principal authors of the paper acknowledged that text from background sources was mistakenly used in this article without proper reference to the original source. Upon investigation carried out according to the Committee on Publication Ethics guidelines, it has been found that the authors have duplicated or rephrased parts from the following articles:
  • The section under “Distribution of nitrile degrading enzyme systems” (Appl Microbiol Biotechnol article, page 34) contains similar text of the article “Biochemistry and biotechnology of mesophilic and thermophilic nitrile metabolizing enzymes“ from Extremophile (1998), 2, 207–216; pp. 207–8.
  • The section under “Ferric NHases” (Appl Microbiol Biotechnol article, p. 37), contains verbatim text of the article “Metalloenzyme nitrile hydratase: Structure, regulation, and application to biotechnology” Nature Biotechnology (1998), 733–736. pp. 733;
  • The section under “Ferric NHases” (Appl Microbiol Biotechnol article, p. 37), contains verbatim text of the article “Nitrile hydrolases” Curr Opin Chem Biol (2000), 4, 95–102; pp. 96.
  • The section under “Cobalt NHases” (Appl Microbiol Biotechnol article, p. 38), contains verbatim text of the article “Metalloenzyme nitrile hydratase: Structure, regulation, and application to biotechnology” Nature Biotechnology (1998), 733–736. pp. 734.
  • The article appears to contain paraphrased text from various parts of the article “Microbial Metabolism of Nitriles and Its Biotechnological Potential” Journal of Scientific & Industrial Research Vol. 58, December 1999, pp 925–947.
  • Tables 1, 2 & 3 in the article have similarities with the tables in the article “Microbial Metabolism of Nitriles and Its Biotechnological Potential” Journal of Scientific & Industrial Research Vol. 58, December 1999, pp 925–947.
  • Fig. 3 (p. 38) of the Appl Microbiol Biotechnol article has similarities with Figure 1 of the article “Metalloenzyme nitrile hydratase: Structure, regulation, and application to biotechnology” Nature Biotechnology (1998), 733–36; pp.734.
  • Fig. 4 (p. 40) of the AMB has similarities with Figure 3 of the article “The catalytic mechanism of amidase also involves nitrile hydrolysis” FEBS Letters (1998), 439, 325–328; pp. 326
The authors have agreed to the retraction.


Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Really!! I doubt !! No good happened in NIPER last five years


The Curious Case of NIPER Registrar

Date-21-06-2016

To,
Shri Narendra Damodardas Modi,
H.E. Prime Minister of India,
South block, Raisana hills, New Delhi-110101.

CC to: (Copy is made for concerned personnel):
1.     Hon’ble Minister Shri Ananth Kumar, Chemical & Fertilizers, Shashtri Bhawan, New Delhi-110001. (E.Mail:akumar-alpha@sansad.nic.inananth@ananth.org)
2.     Hon’ble Minister Shri Hansraj Gangaram Ahir, MoS, Chemical & Fertilizers, Shashtri Bhawan, New Delhi-110001. (E. Mail: hansraj_ahir@rediffmil.com)
3.     Secretary, Department of Pharmaceuticals, 3rd floor, B Wing, Janpath Bhawan, New Delhi -110001.
4.     Secretary, CVC, Satarkata Bhavan, GPO Complex, Block-A INA, New Delhi 110023

Subject/Prayer: A humble request to H.E. Prime Minister of India  for 1) Removing of a person CVO cum Registrar of National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER), Mohali (PUNJAB) against him CBI has registered a FIR on corruption charges (CBI FIR NO. RCCHG2016A0005 dated 14-1-2016)


Hon’ble Sir,
Greetings from a PhD Student!
A democratic welfare state takes measures for welfare of its people. Healthcare and medicines is one such important welfare area. Making available affordable medicines for debilitating diseases is one of the thrust areas of government. Stakes are high for the country for developing good, new, competitive drugs considering the international scenario and international intellectual property regime. The govt. entrusts such important tasks to its pharmaceutical experts for which it puts in public money and hopes for the best. But why these hopes are often belied is typically illustrated in the case of National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER), Mohali- an Institute of national importance created by an act of parliament under Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizer. Appointment of NIPER Mohali Registrar (Mr PJPS Waraich) was made on 09-06-2011 through a selection committee headed by Prof. K.K. Bhutani (Officiating Director). In this case of appointment of registrar ,although the appointing authority of the Registrar was Board of Governors (BOG). Yet this appointment was made by Officiating Director (Prof. K.K. Bhutani) which was not as per the statutes of NIPER.
As per NIPER statues Cluse 3.1.2 (b) to appoint Professor, Associate Professor, Assistant professor and other staff in equivalent grades, as may be necessary on the recommendation of the selection committee constituted for the purpose;  

However as recorded in the minuteds of the 54th meeting "The board noted the appointment of Wing Cdr PJP Singh Waraich (Retd.) as Registrar of the Institute"

Standard english dictionary definition of, 
Approved vs Noted: Approved and noted are English verbs that both pertain to a demonstration of affirmation towards an act or object. They are however two distinct verbs used for different contexts.
Approved by definition means to confirm, ratify or sanction officially or to commend or regard as good. It is an expression of acceptance towards a favorable or pleasing thing or action. 
On the other hand noted, means to have taken into knowledge, awareness, or notice of the already executed proactive action of another person without approving or disapproving it.

Looking to the illegality and arbitrariness in the selection process of registrar Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana High Court had quashed (Set-aside the selection and appointment of Registrar vide its order Civil Writ Petition No.6458 of 2012 dated 30-11-2012. Later on approached the division bench of Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana High Court and got a stay on the operation of the Single Judge order of Haryana High Court and he continues to survive on a pending double bench appeal by delaying tactics. The matter is now pending for decision for which the next date is 07-07-2016. The details of the case show that he misrepresented facts about his qualification in and experience to secure selection. Interestingly, Appointment of NIPER Mohali Registrar (Mr PJPS Waraich) under the scanner of CBI inquiry
Since the appointment of registrar was for a period of five year on contract basis which is coming to an end on 03-07-2016 and both Registrar (Mr PJPS Waraich) and Officiating Director (Prof. K.K. Bhutani) are hand in glove in this matter. We are apprehending that the Officiating Director (Prof. K.K. Bhutani) will extend his contract/services just to misguide the Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana High Court and to benefit registrar for their survival. It is also relevant that both officials are charged for corruption but both of them continue to occupy their positions despite a CBI FIR No. RCCHG2016A0005 dated 14.01.2016. CBI registered a preliminary inquiry PE-CHG2014A0010 and initiated a detailed inquiry in response to petition CWP-14537 of 2012 in High Court spanning more than a year (2015) and registered CBI FIR NO. RCCHG2016A0005 dated 14-1-2016 against 9 officials of NIPER, Mohali including present Officiating Director, Dr. K.K.Bhutani and present Registrar, Mr. P.J.P. Singh Warraich, for large scale misappropriation of funds released to NIPER for meeting objectives of research projects approved in national interest. The charges listed in the FIR are serious and in respect of criminal offences u/s 120-B read with Sections 420 (Cheating), 409 (Criminal Breach of Trust), 467 (Forgery), 471 (using as genuine a document known to be false) of IPC and Section 13(2) r/w 13(1) (c) & 1(1) (d) of Prevention of Corruption Act,1988.(Criminal Misconduct by a Public Servant).Subsequently, on 12-2-2016, the CBI conducted raids at 22 locations across the country and ceased incriminating documents from the residences of Dr. K.K. Bhutani, Officiating Director, NIPER and Mr. PJP Singh Warraich, Registrar, NIPER, Mohali (Punjab) and other officials. Under the FIR details of accused persons in the Case No. RCCHG2016A0005 dated 14.01.2016 following accused have been registered by CBI for further investigation:
(i) Dr. P.Rama Rao, the then Director, NIPER, Mohali
(ii) Dr. K.K. Bhutani, Officiating Director, NIPER, Mohali
(iii) Sh. PJP Singh Waraich, Registrar & CVO NIPER Mohali
(iv) Sh. Bhupinder Singh, the then Dy. Registrar (F&A), NIPER MOhali
(v) Sh. Mathai Jose, Finance and Accounts Officer, NIPER Mohali
(vi) Sh. Hardip Singh, the then Section Officer (Budget), NIPER MOhali
(vii) Sh. Rajesh Moza, the then Dy. Registrar (Exam Section), NIPER Mohali
(viii) Dr. Saranjit Singh, Professor, NIPER, Mohali
(ix) M/s Sci-Finder Informatices (now ACS International India Private Ltd.) through its owners and proprietors
(x) other unknown officials of Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, New Delhi and unknown officials of NIPER Mohali and unknown private persons.



Critical points about Case of Mr. PJP Singh Waraich.
1)      The appointment of Mr Waraich has already been quashed by a single bench of Punjab and Haryana High Court Civil Writ Petition No.6458 of 2012 and he continues to survive on a pending double bench appeal by delaying tactics. The details of the case show that he misrepresented facts about his qualification and experience to secure selection
2)      Appointment of NIPER Mohali Registrar (Mr PJPS Waraich) under the scanner of CBI inquiry.
 3)     Mr. PJP Singh Waraich already has a proper case registered case against him (FIR by CBI No. RCCHG2016A0005 dated 14-1-2016) by name and matter is under investigation Unfortunately, still he has continuing as CVO cum Registrar of NIPER, Mohali, as well as appellate authority under the RTI act he making a mockery of all act, rules and constitutional provisions including vigilance rules, under which he also needs to be suspended/removal keeping in view of serious of the charges and not rewarded with plum positions of power. How can the CVO of an Institute talk of ethics and values to students and faculty, when his own conduct is under a cloud and he is under investigation pertaining to criminal charges?

The following extracts are relevant for removal of Mr. P.J.P. Singh Waraich from post of CVO cum Registrar of NIPER, Mohali, as well as appellate authority under the RTI act
1)         As per CVC rules, he must be immediately placed under suspension. Relevant rule position in the Central Vigilance Commission Manual (http://cvc.nic.in/vigman/chapterv.pdf) is reproduced below:
“2.       When a Government servant may be suspended.
2.1.      A Government servant may be placed under suspension when a disciplinary proceeding against him is contemplated or is pending or where, in the opinion of the competent authority, he has engaged himself in activities prejudicial to the interest of the security of the State or when a case against him in respect of any criminal offence is under investigation, enquiry or trial.
2)         As per CCS (CCA) RULES, 1965 
 (10) Action against Government servants to be taken if they are later found ineligible or unqualified for their initial recruitment -
Attention of the Ministries/Departments is invited to Ministry of Home Affairs OM No. 39/1/67-Ests.(A) dated 21.02.1967 wherein it was clarified that departmental action can be taken against Government servant in respect of misconduct committed before his employment. Attention is also invited to the Ministry of Home Affairs OM No. 5/1/63-Estt. (D) dated 30.04.1965 wherein Ministries/Departments were requested to make use of the provision of ‘warning’ inserted in the Attestation Form for taking action against Government servant furnishing false information at the time of appointment.
2. A question has now arisen as to whether a Government Servant can be discharged from service where it is discovered later that the Government servant was not qualified or eligible for his initial recruitment in service. The Supreme Court in its judgment in the District Collector, Vizianagram vs. M. Tripura Sundari Devi (1990(4) SLR 237 went into this issue and observed as under:-
“It must further be realized by all concerned that when an advertisement mentions a particular qualification and an appointment is made in disregard of the same, it is not a matter only between the appointing authority and the appointee concerned. The aggrieved are all those who had similar or better qualifications than the appointee or appointees but who had not applied for the post because they did not possess the qualifications mentioned in the advertisement. It amounts to a fraud on public to appoint a person with inferior qualifications in such circumstances unless it is clearly stated that the qualifications are relaxable. No Court should be a party to the perpetuation of the fraudulent practice.”
The matter has been examined in consultation with the Ministry of Law and Justice and it has now been decided that wherever it is found that a Government servant, who was not qualified or eligible in terms of the recruitment rules etc, for initial recruitment in service or had furnished false information or produced a false certificate in order to secure appointment, he should not be retained in service. If he is a probationer or a temporary Government servant, he should be discharged or his services should be terminated. If he has become a permanent Government servant, an inquiry as prescribed in Rule 14 of CCS (CCA) Rules, 1965 may be held and if the charges are proved, the Government servant should be removed or dismissed from service. In no circumstances should any other penalty be imposed.
3. Such discharge, termination, removal or dismissal from service would, however, be without prejudice to the right of the Government to prosecute such Government servants.
[Deptt. Of Personnel & Training OM No. 11012/7/91-Estt. (A) dated 19.05.1993]

Sir, it is therefore urged that your good offices may be used to take up the matter with appropriate authorities to ascertain the facts
Grievances
1) Despite FIR being registered on serious criminal charges against Mr. P.J.P. Singh Waraich, he is still holding positions and have not even been suspended allowing him to enjoy the perks and salary of position and also to victimize others. 

2) Issue of appropriate instructions to appropriate authority for putting under suspension/removal Mr. P.J.P. Singh Waraich name in the FIR.
Thanking you in anticipation of strong and exemplary action against the guilty officials. As on ordinary citizen I repose all faith and trust in you and hope truth and justice will prevail over malpractices and deceit.
Jai Hind


Tuesday, 31 May 2016

How India punishes those who expose corruption

Dinesh C Sharma
DINESH C SHARMA
Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) is normally used in a lighter vein to refer to politicians who shoot from their mouth. But for a veterinary scientist-turned-whistle-blower, FMD is not a matter of joke.
He is being harassed for blowing the whistle on a massive scam relating to supply of substandard FMD vaccines throughout the country by unscrupulous manufactures. Not just this, he has been slapped with a Rs 102 crore defamation suit by one of them – Indian Immunologicals Limited (IIL).
What is worse is both the vaccine manufacturer as well as the whistle-blower work under the same government entity - Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying. IIL is an establishment of the National Dairy Development Board and the whistle-blower worked in the National Institute of Animal Health, Baghpat, where he found the FMD vaccines to be of sub-standard quality.
The defamation suit, therefore, clearly shows that the government department of dairying is punishing the whistle-blower using IIL, instead of protecting him.
This is not the first time that whistleblower scientist, BR Singh, is being targeted. Every time he smelt a rat in farm research stations where he worked and tried to bring it to the notice of the parent department in the ministry of agriculture, he was punished.
In the span of past ten years, he has been shunted to research centres literally all over the country – Hisar, Bikaner, Port Blair, Jharnapani (Nagaland), Baghpat and Izatnagar. It is rare for a scientist to be shunted from one lab to another like this.
The FMD case is serious as it involves health of millions of cattle, who are vaccinated at government cost, and vaccine failures have led to disease outbreaks in the past two years killing thousands of cattle.
The test reports, which are in public domain, show that the samples tested in September-October 2014 had failed quality criteria on several counts. Despite this another government lab in Bangalore, Indian Veterinary Research Institute, gave a go ahead to defaulting companies.
FMD is not the only case where a whistle-blower has been punished. Large scale corruption in National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, Mohali, was exposed by a whistle-blower scientist in 2008, but the parent government body – Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) turned a blind eye, and got the scientist terminated from the institute. Now the very same charges have been mentioned in an FIR filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
In another case, scientist who exposed filing of fake patent applications and missing samples of genetically modified (GM) crops in the Indian Agriculture Research Institute was punished, while those facing the charges have been promoted to higher posts.
This is a widespread malaise in Indian research institutions which is rarely talked about. We need to evolve a system where people can file complaints and they are investigated without any harm being done to complainants.
Such a system needs to be independent otherwise parent ministries tend to bury them, as evident in the case of FMD vaccines and NIPER.
(Courtesy of Mail Today.)