Published: 03rd July 2021
In March, this 'inflammatory' IIT Guwahati researcher was expelled over a Facebook post. Now, they've terminated him
The researcher, Vikrant Singh, on the other hand, says that he would nevertheless continue his education and research
Three months after expulsion, IIT Guwahati on June 25, terminated the studentship of Vikrant Singh, a fifth-year PhD scholar of the institute. In a letter addressed to Vikrant, the institute said that his "defamatory social media posts, offensive letters/emails to various institute functionaries and the Students' Disciplinary Committee" were the reasons for the expulsion.
"The Students' Disciplinary Committee (SDC) in its meeting held on April 12, 2021, had discussed the disciplinary case on defaming the institute and institute functionaries by Vikrant Singh, a Research Scholar in the Dept of EEE, and recommended the
termination of his studentship from the institute" reads the institute's letter.
What is the defamatory post that the institute is talking about though? Earlier in October, Vikrant had shared a news item about the JEE Main topper using a proxy to write the examination and went on to deride what he felt were falling standards in the country's most eminent institutes. In his post, he criticises IITG for asking former professor Brijesh Rai to opt for compulsory retirement. Rai was Vikrant's former research guide until he was sent on compulsory retirement. This had caused the institute to expel him until July 27. Following the expulsion, he had sent a representation to the institute and had put up posts on Facebook, explaining his side.
At the same time, the institute in its letter says, "Even after various opportunities given by the institute, the behavior of Vikrant Singh has not improved and he continued to indulge in the activities of indiscipline by violating the directions issued to him. More importantly, he continued to defame the institute and institute functionaries through numerous social media posts." The institute also says that Vikrant, along with Rai had mobilised students as well as some shopkeepers across the faculty gate to a protest.
Vikrant, on the other hand, says that he will continue his education and research. "I have invested my whole career to learn so that I would serve the society at large. Right now, I do not have any option apart from continuing my research work," he says.