ITC Chairman Yogesh C Deveshwar has sued eastern India's leading English daily The Telegraph for 'several crores of rupees' over an unflattering profile on his stand on the Indian Institute of Management's fee structure.
Deveshwar, who is also chairman of the IIM-Calcutta board, was asked by the Institute to draw up a resolution on the government order to reduce fees. He had suggested accepting the human resource development ministry's order to slash IIM fees from Rs 150,000 to Rs 30,000 per year for the two-year course.
IIM-C faculty members severely opposed Deveshwar. The Telegraph's recent profile on Deveshwar apparently peeved the ITC boss.
According to sources in The Telegraph, the defamation suit was filed last week. The sources said the claim for damages ran into 'several crores' of rupees.
There has been no official comment on the suit from either side.
After IIM-C faculty members made their displeasure public, Deveshwar said he had just made a suggestion and it was not binding on the IIM-C board.
'The fee-cut order may be implemented in the belief that it is binding on the Institute,' Deveshwar's two-page observation submitted to the IIM-C board earlier this month had said.
While the IIMs at Lucknow, Kozhikode and Indore have agreed to reduce their fees, IIM-Ahmedabad, IIM-Calcutta and IIM-Bangalore moved the Supreme Court against the government order.
IIM-C faculty members decided this week to collect the existing fees from new students with the provision that if the Supreme Court so desired they could refund the excess money.