The Delhi High Court today made it clear that plagiarism by a professor cannot be tolerated and anyone indulging in such activity should be shown the door.
The court's observation came on a plea seeking removal of a Jawaharlal Nehru University associate professor from his post in the Center for Persian and Central Asian Studies alleging that he has plagiarised works of several authors in his Ph.D thesis as well as in a book on Iranian politics.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar sought response of the JNU and its associate professor SK Ishtiaque Ahmed against whom the allegations were made.
"Plagiarism by a professor cannot be tolerated in any manner. He has to be shown the door," the bench said.
The court asked the JNU to file a status report in the matter after conducting an inquiry and also initiate criminal action, if the professor was found on the wrong foot. It listed the matter for further hearing on August 10.
The petition by Nadeem Akhtar, a Ph.D research scholar in the same department of the varsity, said that despite the instances of plagiarism being brought to the attention of the JNU, no action was taken and the person concerned was promoted from assistant professor to his current position of associate professor.
Advocates R K Saini and Akshita Raina, appearing for the petitioner, argued that the initial appointment of the professor was arbitrary and illegal and sought his removal from his current post.
The plea has alleged that "a huge chunk of his (professor's) thesis is lifted verbatim from 15 different sources. The respondent 3 (professor) has not only plagiarised texts and footnotes from various books of writers in his Ph.D thesis, but has also plagiarised the conclusion of his thesis using the conclusion of an eminent writer, as his own".
Apart from that, the petition has also sought quashing of the Ph.D degree awarded in Persian language in 2000 to the professor.
As an interim relief, the plea has sought a direction to the university to cease his duties as research supervisor at any level and be ordered not to assign any classes till the outcome of this petition.
It has sought that the professor be prohibited from supervising and guiding any M.Phil or Ph.D student in the university during the pendency of the plea.
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