SLIET officials declare legal officer dead, under scanner for fund misuse
Three indicted for misconduct in preliminary inquiry; a regular departmental inquiry is awaited
SANGRUR :Top officials of a prestigious deemed to be university had declared a legal officer of the institute ‘dead’ and hired a lawyer of their choice allegedly to ‘misuse and embezzle’ funds. The three administrative officers of Sant Longowal Institute of Engineering & Technology Longowal (SILET) have now been indicted for the misconduct in the preliminary inquiry and a regular departmental inquiry is awaited.
The board of management (BOM) committee in its meeting on May 28 at MHRD, New Delhi, gave its nod to initiate an inquiry against the officers concerned — Sanjay Gupta, the then officiating deputy registrar (admn); Sanjiv Bansal, then officiating registrar, and Dr VK Jain, the then officiating director. The BOM also authorised the director to constitute an inquiry committee and issue the charge sheet to officials concerned.
All the three accused officials still works with the institute. Sanjay Gupta is the librarian; Sanjiv Bansal is a professor of management studies, and VK Jain teaches electrical engineering.
A two-member committee of Harish Chopra and JS Dhillon, formed by the SLIET director, in its probe on December 9, 2017, had found that advocate Nasib Singh Gill, who was the institute counsel for court cases, was shown dead, and a new lawyer was hired on January 30, 2017, who was paid ₹60,000 on May 25. The payment was confirmed by account section on December 7, 2017.
“It may be confirmed whether Nasib Singh Gill is alive and it is a serious case of misappropriation of funds by the officers by intentionally presenting wrong facts, which needs proper investigation as per the institution rules,” the two-member committee observed.
When contacted by Hindustan Times over the phone, Nasib Singh Gill said, “I was told that they have hired a new counsel.”
The SLIET Employees’ Association has also demanded a thorough probe. “It is not as simple as presented. The matter should be probed why they had to show a living man dead. Even we have doubts that they misused administrative powers and took arbitrary decisions,” said Jujhar Longowal, president of the employees’ body.
SLIET director Shailendra Jain said, “The preliminary inquiry was submitted in the BOM meeting. However, a new probe committee will be constituted on the directions of BOM which will inquire the entire matter.”
When contacted, Sanjiv Bansal, the then officiating registrar, was reluctant to make a comment. Sanjay Gupta, then officiating deputy registrar (admn), said the new committee will probe the matter and he will not comment. VK Jain, the then officiating director, said it was a ‘human error’ as ‘died’ was wrongly written in place of ‘denied’.
“The office of advocate Nasib Singh Gill informed us that his health was not good due to old age. To show him dead was a clerical mistake. The new advocate won three or four cases for the institute,” Jain said.
All the three accused officials still work with the institute.