Thiruvananthapuram: Unfazed by wide
criticism of its action, the management of a church-run
college has refused to reinstate dismissed lecturer T J
Joseph, whose hand was chopped off by activists of radical
group PFI, but the government said it might step in, if
As Joseph made a plea to the college to reinstate him,
the college bluntly told him his explanations were not
convincing at all and any relaxation of disciplinary action
would be based only on the court decision.
According to church sources, Newman College manager Fr
Thomas Malekkudy has responded to plea of Joseph, who was
attacked by alleged activists of Popular Front of India on
July 4 for preparing a question paper with alleged derogatory
references to Prophet Mohammad.
Mahatma Gandhi University Syndicate had described the
action on Joseph as a `naked violation` of the relevant
provision of MG Act and asked the college to revoke the
dismissal order, which involved "gross violation" of
Ignoring the public outcry against its action and the
syndicate directive, the college maintained that Joseph had
never admitted to his serious mistake in his reply to the
letters sent by the management.
Speaking to reporters at Thrissur, Education Minister
M A Baby said the college management did not follow due
procedures while dismissing Joseph and if necessary, the
government government would intervene if the management was
not willing to reconsider its decision.
"The management`s decision was like sentencing a
person to life imprisonment for a minor crime. The government
will watch what steps the college management is going to take
on the syndicate`s directive," Baby said.
He said Joseph`s dismissal did not augur well for a
healthy academic atmosphere nor was it in tune with democratic
Joseph was first suspended in March for preparing the
question paper which raised the hackles of Muslim outfits and
was sacked on September 1.
The management in its letter refusing to reconsider
its decision, also accused Joseph of trying to shed personal
responsibility and put the blame on the college principal and
the management after the controversy erupted.
The decision to sack Joseph had led to public outcry
with several intellectuals, writers, activists and others
rallying behind him and condemning his dismissal.
Two days ago, Joseph made a personal plea to the
college management to reinstate him as his family relied on