Kottayam: Lecturer T J Joseph, whose
right palm was chopped off by radical activists and who was
also sacked, had a ray of hope in getting his job back with
the Mahatma Gandhi University syndicate asking his college to
re-consider its decision.
After a meeting of the University Syndicate,
Vice-Chancellor Rajan Gurukkul told reporters the University
body felt that the Church-run Newman college management at
Thodupuzha had not followed due procedures while dismissing
Joseph from service.
"Considering the procedural flaws and humanitarian
consideration, the University would ask the college management
to reconsider the action against Joseph," Gurukkal said.
Joseph was attacked allegedly by activists of radical outfit
Popular Front of India(PFI). The college is affiliated to the
Mahatma Gandhi University.
The college management said it would respond to the
University`s request after getting the Syndicate`s decision in
Asked to comment on the Syndicate`s decision, Joseph
said he felt relieved to a "certain extent." Jospeh maintained
that he has done nothing wrong to hurt the sentiments of
anyone or any religion.
Kerala Education Minister M A Baby while hoping that
Jospeh will be reinstated said there was a procedural error on
the part of the college management while carrying out its
Joseph, who is still struggling to recover from the
double blow, has sent a letter to the management, requesting
that he be reinstated on humanitarian grounds as he had not
deliberately done any harm.
He said his salary was his only source of income to
sustain his family and that his 25-year record as a teacher
had been unblemished.
Joseph, who was teaching Malayalam literature, was first
suspended after the question paper row earlier this year and
dismissed from service on September 1 on the grounds that he
had hurt the religious sentiments of a community.
The college authorities had justified their action,
holding that it was necessary to assert the secular
credentials of the educational institutions run by the church.
Writers and academics, mostly of pro-Left circles, have
rallied round Joseph condemning the college`s action as harsh
and inhuman as he had suffered physical assault from fanatics.
The Mahatma University Syndicate is also expected to
look into the legal aspects of the action against Joseph at
its meeting this week. A Syndicate press release said it found the action
against the teacher was in "gross violation of procedures".
It also asked the college management to review the
dismissal order and "take appropriate further steps in
accordance with law, justice and equity."
The syndicate, on considering the proceedings, found
there was "naked violation" of Section 63 (Sub-Section 4) of
the Mahatma Gandhi University Act, which stipulates the
duration within which the educational agency should complete
the proceedings, the release said.
As it was a gross error vitiating the entire
proceedings, the Syndicate had resolved to direct the college
management to review the dismissal order, it said.