Guwahati: A research scholar from IIT Guwahati’s Department of Electronics and Electrical Engineering has filed a protest petition against the final police report in the 2019 IIT Guwahati case where Professor TG Sitharam was accused of spending institute funds for his own amusement.

Vikrant Singh, then 28, had lodged an FIR against Professor TG Sitharam and others for holding a meeting at a five-star hotel in 2019 and is now reportedly being harassed for his complaint.

“I had lodged an FIR against Professor T G Sitharam and others for holding a meeting in a five-star hotel and thereby wasting public funds. Such a meeting could have been held at IIT Guwahati free of cost. The police later filed its final report stating the FIR as a mistake of facts,” said Singh, the complainant.

“After some delays due to COVID-19, now I have filed a protest petition against the final report of the police and Hon’ble Chief Judicial Magistrate of Kamrup, Amingaon, has ordered a further inquiry,” he added.

The meeting at the five-star hotel was held on August 11, 2018, soon after which a regional news channel – Prag News – broadcast a story where a journalist asked Prof. Sitharam why was the meeting held in a five-star hotel. The complainant said the professor told the reporter to turn off the camera and didn’t give any reply.

Following that, on October 19, 2019, he decided to lodged a complaint with North Guwahati police station. The police filed a case under Section 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant) read with Section 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the Indian Penal Code. The offence is cognizable and non-bailable.

Talking to EastMojo, Singh said, “I wanted to visit CUHK, Hong Kong, to attend a Summer School, where only 3 students from India are selected. Besides me, the other candidates were from IISc and ITFR Mumbai. It was very crucial for my research work, and, therefore, I applied for funding. But I was denied funding.”

He said it irked him that Professor T.G. Sitharam used the institute’s funds for his own enjoyment “when funding for other pivotal activities was being held back”.

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