St Stephen's College: HC to hear Prof's plea on Aug 16
New Delhi: A former Vice-Principal of St Stephen's College has moved the Delhi High Court against its earlier order, which had refused to stay the disciplinary proceedings against him by the college authorities for his alleged "misconduct".
An associate professor in the Chemistry department of the college at present, M S Frank has contended that the proceedings against him were initiated to "harass" him at the behest of college Principal Valson Thampu as he had challenged the latter's appointment as college principal in 2008.
Frank pleaded to a division bench of Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw to quash the entire proceedings against him.
A single judge bench on December 23 last year and also on July 20 had restrained the disciplinary authority from taking any action against Frank, but had later allowed it to go ahead with the disciplinary proceeding against him.
The division bench has fixed August 16 as the date to hear the final argument on Frank's plea.
The bench asked the parties to inform the single judge that with their consent it will decide the issue and directed that the petition pending before the single judge be listed before it on the next date of hearing.
Filing the appeal through counsel Sunil Mathews and Rajat Singh, Frank has contended that the disciplinary proceedings initiated against him is "against the principle of natural justice" as the college principal himself is the complainant and he had also appointed the enquiry officer.
He had also tried to influence the witnesses who have deposed before the enquiry proceeding in his favour, said Frank.
Frank's counsel argued before the bench that as many as 44 college teachers had also formally registered their protest against the proposed action against his client.
As per Frank's appeal, after picking up various issues including his criticism to the principal's function, Frank was issued a show-cause notice on December 1, 2011 for his alleged misconduct and again on December 22, Thampu had issued him a charge sheet stating that his response to the earlier notice was found unsatisfactory, insufficient and inadequate.
Frank had been asked to appear before an enquiry officer on January 12, but he moved a single-judge bench of the high court on December 23 last year.
The single-judge bench, though refused to stay the proceedings against him, it had restrained the college authority from taking any action against him.
Aggrieved, Frank had then moved the division bench for a stay on the enquiry proceedings and also other appropriate order.