Tuesday 28 August 2012

Both five year plans & Big Guns of NIPER are under scanner of HC

Appart from the non-establishment of Department of Intellectual Property Rights CWP No. 14537 of 2012 also contain specific complains about both 11 th and 12th five year plan along with complains against Mr. Ashok Kumar, Mr. Mukul Joshi, Dr. V. M. Katoch Secretaries of GOI and Mr. Arun Jha Joint Secretary of GOI.

In July, 2011 Dr. Bansal came to know that almost 90% of funds had been misappropriated in another scheme of the 11th Five year Plan viz. Project on new specialization in R&D Management (Scheme N14, Rs. 1.60 crores). Similar was the story of misappropriation in another 11th Five Year project pertaining to “Establishment of Business Development Group at NIPER (Scheme No.N-09, Rs.1.75 crores).  Interaction with other faculty members at NIPER revealed large – scale misappropriation of 11th Five Year plan funds in several other research projects also with the amounting running into several crores.  

Deeply distressed and worried by such large scale corruption and gross misappropriation of public money released to NIPER for taking up research projects in national interest, Dr. Bansal lodged a formal complaint with Chairman Board of Governors, praying for suitable action against both Directors of NIPER and setting up of inquiry regarding large scale misappropriation of 11th Five Year Plan Funds, running into several crores of rupees.

Chairman BOG remained silent, did not acknowledge the letter and took no action despite seriousness of the matter. However, based on a ‘Confidential Agenda’ taken by officiating Director against Dr. Bansal, Chairman BOG approved an inquiry against the Dr. Bansal in the same BOG MEETING (54th Meeting) in which the complaint should have been tabled before all members of the BOG. As a result, Dr. Bansal was victimized and faced considerable harassment at hands of officiating Director for acting as a ‘whistleblower’.  

The Secretaries in the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers who were responsible for monitoring the utilization of 11th Five Year Plan Funds (2007-12) were Mr. Ashok Kumar, IAS and Mr. Mukul Joshi, IAS.  Both were aware of the complaints made in 2009 and 2011 regarding large scale misappropriation of 11th Five Year Plan Funds, in NIPER, Mohali but in a SERIOUS BREACH OF PUBLIC TRUST and OFFICIAL RESPONSIBILITY/STATUTORY DUTIES under Govt. of India Financial Rules (GFR Rule 26), took no action.

Dr. Bansal as a vigilant and responsible citizen, made a formal complaint relating to large scale misappropriation of 11th Five Year Plan Funds to Mr. Mukul Joshi, IAS vide detailed letter of 43 pages dated 20.5.2011 (Annexure P-12), but Mr. Joshi did not even acknowledge the same and took no action in the matter, though under the GFR rule 64, as the Secretary, DOP, he carried direct responsibility for proper utilization and accounting of the funds released by the Ministry to NIPER, Mohali.

There has been a serious ‘BREACH OF TRUST’ and ‘NON-PERFORMANCE OF ‘STATUTORY DUTIES’ by powerful and highly placed officials viz. IAS officers at rank of Secretary, who misused and abused their positions in collusion with willing academicians i.e. the Directors of NIPER. They misappropriated research funds meant for research and infrastructure creation to develop new and improved medicines for diseases such as cancer, diabetes, tuberculosis, malaria etc. and reduce suffering of patients, leading to failure of plans approved in National Interest, for the growth and technological progress of the Nation. 

Dr. Bansal is worried and concerned at the apparent ease with which the funds were misappropriated and wishes to bring to the attention of the Hon’ble Court that under the 12th Five Year Plan, institute has sought approx. Rs. 1350 crores under various ‘research schemes’, whereas in previous plans, even Rs.156 crores could not be properly utilized and most of it was misappropriated.

It appears that hard-earned tax-payer’s money, does not prick the conscience of these ‘modern academicians’. They feel no sense of remorse or guilt at the immense loss they caused to the nation by failure of plans approved in national interest, to the growth of a premier institute established for healthcare research and also students/suffering patients who were the end beneficiaries. They felt no responsibility or accountability attached to the public funds meant for research relating to dreaded diseases such as cancer, tuberculosis etc. Rather, they regarded the funds as ‘party money’ to be used in whatever manner and wherever they wanted to, without any accountability or questions being raised because none dared to raise their voice. Such conduct and lack of any guilt on part of senior academicians who are supposed to be the guiding light for students, deserves the most swift and exemplary punishment to prevent repetition of the same story in the next five year plan, which has a proposed outlay of Rs.1350 crores.

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