Tug of war over Neeraj Hatekar

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Dr-Neeraj-Hatekar_1Congress, NCP, AAP and smaller parties come forward to support suspended professor Neeraj Hatekar.

Political parties always shy away from supporting people during crisis situation but they are willing to come forward to lend a helping hand if they want to derive any political mileage out of it. AAP, Congress and NCP which were initially reluctant to take up the case of suspended professor Neeraj Hatekar from Mumbai university have come forward to support him after the incident was reported by the media.

On 4th January, Professor Neeraj Hatekar was suspended by the vice chancellor of Mumbai University Rajan Velukar as students protested against his suspension. Later, the Aam Aadmi party jumped into the fray and started backing the students.

After Aam Aadmi Party, Congress too intervened in this matter. Mumbai Congress President Janardhan Chandurkar met the students and assured them that Neeraj Hatekar’s suspension will be revoked. He had written a letter to the Chief Minister of Maharashtra Prithviraj Chavan and urging him to reject the suspension order of Neeraj Hatekar.

Not to be left behind even the NCP too came forward to support Hatekar for deriving political mileage out of this issue. The NCP Chief Executive Jitendra Ahwad had met the protesting students and assured them that NCP is backing them all time and Neeraj Hatekar will soon resume his duties. Ahwad also assured students that he will be meeting Governor and will request him to withdraw the suspension of Neeraj Hatekar.

MLC and President of Lok Bharati, Kapil Patil accompanied by Prof Neeraj Hatekar met the Governor of Maharashtra K Sankaranarayanan at Raj Bhavan, Mumbai and requested him to revoke the suspension of Prof Hatekar.

Janardhan Chandurkar, Mumbai Congress president talking to AV, said,” To reject the suspension order of Neeraj Hatekar I wrote letter to CM Prithviraj Chavan. Congress is supporting students of Mumbai University who are protesting against Hatekar’s suspension.”

Mayank Gandhi, AAP Maharashtra President said, “Neeraj Hatekar was exposing the truth hence he was thrown ousted from his post. AAP will support them and we will strongly protest against the injustice meted with Neeraj Hatekar. It’s not a publicity stunt to derive any political mileage.”

Neeraj Hatekar was suspended for allegedly misinforming the media about irregularities by the vice-chancellor and, hence, breaching the code of conduct.

The suspension order has come days after the professor held a press conference on December 12, ‘exposing’ vice-chancellor Rajan Welukar for mismanagement of the university.

Prof Neeraj Hatekar has now filed a petition in the Bombay High Court, appealing that his suspension order be quashed and set aside.

Hatekar is also convenor of the Joint Action Committee for Improvement of Higher Education in Maharashtra, a body that has protested the lack of transparency in the appointment of the vice-chancellor. Hatekar and others had earlier claimed that Welukar’s academic and publication records did not meet the qualification criteria for the post.