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Centre to file new charges against AIIMS director
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July 25, 2006 13:47 IST

In a surprise move on Tuesday, the Centre offered in the Delhi High Court to rescind its controversial decision to sack All India Institute of Medical Sciences Director P Venugopal but will raise charges against him afresh.

An undertaking to this effect was given by Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramainum after a division bench headed by acting Chief Justice Vijender Jain rebuffed the Centre for filing an appeal against a single judge order staying the termination decision.

The government withdrew the appeal after the bench threatened to dismiss it. "We will make our decision more democratic and transparent by circulating the charges levelled against him," Subrahmaniam informed the Court.

He said the copies of the charges will be circulated not only to Venugopal but also to all governing body members of the premier institute and its faculty.

The Centre had moved the Delhi High Court on Monday seeking quashing of the order of a single-judge bench which stayed the institute's governing council's July 5 decision to terminate Venugopal's services.

Listing 45 grounds to justify the termination move, the Centre accused Venugopal among other things of actively patronising the anti-reservation agitation by the resident doctors in the institute's premises in May this year. The Centre also claimed that a number of officers on special duty were being provided guest house accommodation at the institute for the past several years and that the allegation that Union Health Minster A Ramadoss had favoured his own staff for availing the facilities was baseless.

In his application, Venugopal had contended that no notice was issued to him nor was the proposal circulated among the governing body for discussion. He argued that the decision was motivated by arbitariness, malice and that principles of natural justice were violated by the government in deciding to terminate his services. Venugopal had also contended that he was appointed to a "tenure post" of six years and hence cannot be removed until completion of the tenure.

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