news Tuesday, July 21, 2015 - 05:30
  Calicut University is likely to review the PhD awarded to Kerala University Pro Vice-Chancellor N Veeramanikandan, after a two-member panel did a manual check of alleged plagiarism in the thesis.   The Times of India reported that the note, signed by the university registrar and director of research (DoR), would be taken up for discussion by the university syndicate on Tuesday. The note urges the syndicate to review the PhD according to university procedure, and also mentions a rule which empowers the university to withdraw or cancel a PhD.   CU had awarded PhD to the PVC in 2009 on the topic `Psychological Dynamics of Asthma in relation to various Etiological and Therapeutic Approaches and Prognosis'. However, in November 2014 a US-based academician, from whose work the thesis was allegedly plagiarized, had written to the state government seeking action against Veeramanikandan.   The New Indian Express quoted Paul Lehrer, Professor of Psychiatry at Rutgers University, New Jersey as saying: “Yes I believe that my work has been plagiarized... I think it should be brought to the attention of University authorities, who should disallow this work in a PhD dissertation and to any journal that has published this work.”   Software-based verification had shown that some chapters had more than 50 percent of content similarity, The Times of India reported. A month later, the university constituted a five-member panel to look into the charges.     This is not the first time allegations of plagiarism are being leveled at vice chancellors of universities. Pondicherry University Vice-Chancellor Chandra Krishnamurthy was in the midst of a similar controversy. She was alleged to have plagiarised portions of a her book “Legal Education in India”.   The publisher Himalaya Publishing House Private Limited said it withdrew the book in December 2014, after allegations came to light in November that year. The Pondicherry University Teachers association (PUTA) alleged that 98 per cent of the book had been allegedly copied verbatim from research papers written by scholars. Two other books authored by her may not have been published at all.    Read: Why is the Centre silent on activities at Puducherry University    In April, the university campus saw students joining protests against the VC led by around 200 faculty members. Police too were deployed. The allegations against Chandra Krishnamurthy are still under probe.