Delhi High Court

Delhi High Court: Sanjeev Narula J. directed the IIT Delhi Plagiarism Committee to conclude the investigation regarding allegations of plagiarism against its two professors made by a full time Ph.D student at the Department of Management Studies at IIT Delhi.

The Petitioner, Harshal Dilip Kate, joined the full-time Ph.D programme at the Department of Management Studies (DMS) at IIT, Delhi. His concentration was in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility ‘CSR’. Respondent 1 ‘IIT, Delhi’ terminated his registration on account of unsatisfactory performance in two consecutive semesters.

The Petitioner contended that his termination is a result of complaints made by him against his co-guide Dr. Shveta Singh and Chairperson, Student Research Committee Dr. Kanika T. Bhal. He further contended that he participated in several conferences at universities and institutes around the world, which were conducted in online mode, however, this was not appreciated by his co-guide as he did not seek their approval prior to participating in such conferences.

Petitioner further asserted that his co-guide used two of his research proposals for obtaining a Lok Sabha sponsored fellowship for herself worth Rs. 10.80 lacs. The name of the Chairperson of SRC, who was his research supervisor, was mentioned as the Co-Principal Investigator on research proposals for the Lok Sabha fellowship. Ever since Petitioner confronted them i.e., his co-guide and Chairperson of SRC about the issue of plagiarism, they adopted an adversarial attitude towards him and this led to the Petitioner making complaints to the Student Grievance Redressal Committee ‘Respondent 3′ and also Institute Level Plagiarism Committee ‘Respondent 4′.

The Petitioner further informed the Court that the complaints made to the Institute Level Plagiarism Committee are still pending.

The Court thus directed the Institute Level Plagiarism Committee “to conclude the investigation and submit the report to the Court. Further, the report prepared by the Student Grievance Redressal Committee should also be filed with this Court before the next date of hearing, with a copy to the Petitioner.”

[Harshal Dilip Kate v. IIT Delhi, 2022 SCC OnLine Del 1833, decided on 02-06-2022]

Advocates who appeared in this case :

Anshuman and Damini Chawla, Advocate, for the Petitioner;

Arjun Mitra, Advocate, for the Respondent.

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