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IIM Calcutta turf conflict: Director goes to govt against Chairman

A brand new entrance has opened within the ongoing turf conflict on the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, with Director Anju Seth, this time, writing to the federal government against the institute’s Chairman.

Seth, The Indian Express has learnt, has written to the Ministry of Education alleging that the Board of Governors, led by Chairman Shrikrishna Kulkarni, is infringing on her govt powers.

The letter comes lower than two months after over 75 per cent of the IIM-Calcutta college lodged an analogous grievance with the ministry against Seth. The lecturers had alleged that the Director had centralised powers in her palms and usurped their administration- and decision-making roles.

Seth and Chairman Kulkarni didn’t reply to calls, SMS, and an electronic mail left by this newspaper.

Seth has, amongst different issues, informed the federal government that she was sidelined in drafting new rules below the amended IIM Act. These rules are to assist oversee and information IIM administration below the brand new legislation. Incidentally, this too is comparable to what the school had alleged earlier — that they weren’t consulted by the Board or Seth within the formulation and adoption of the brand new rules.

Seth’s letter against the institute chairman, simply as the school letter against her, is extremely uncommon for an IIM.

Among the problems flagged by the lecturers earlier was college scarcity. Sources stated just one new college member had been employed within the final two years regardless of the institute shedding over 10 lecturers on account of resignation, superannuation and voluntary retirement. Some of the exits, the lecturers alleged, had been due to “harassment”.

The college additionally claimed that the disregard of their views on the brand new rules was in contrast to what was achieved by peer institutes corresponding to IIM-A and IIM-B. The Academic Council, the school stated, was given solely 5 days to submit options on the draft rules, and their suggestions on centralisation of powers within the Board and Director was not thought of by the Board whereas finalising the rules.

Seth had dismissed the allegations because the work of “a small group of individuals”, upset along with her efforts to foster a tradition of transparency and accountability. “We are pained by the baseless stories instigated by this small group to sully the institute’s reputation built over decades. Despite the challenges we have confronted, including those posed by the Covid crisis, we are now operating at even greater effectiveness and efficiency, with devotion to the success of our talented students. Having converted challenges into opportunities to strengthen our resilience, we are excited to march into the future with integrity and commitment to the pledge of ‘IIM First’, blessed by the good wishes and support of valued members of our faculty and extended community,” Seth had informed The Indian Express in an electronic mail.

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