Maharanis College Hostel row: Social Welfare Department DD suspended

The state government has ordered the suspension of the deputy director of Social Welfare Department based on a report that highlighted the mismanagement of Maharanis College Hostel. The officer is B M Prakash who is also the joint acting director.

Students of the hostel had protested last month over the affairs of the hostel and had met Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. The students told him that the living conditions at the hostel was unbearable with unclean toilets and bad food. They blamed the hostel management and the Principal and alleged that there was a huge misappropriation of funds at the hostel and the Principal Prof Purushotham was aware of it.

The students brought to the notice of the CM that the hostel had Rs 90 lakh in its account when they joined and now it is just Rs 40 lakh. They also alleged that there was caste discrimination at the hostel.

Following this, Siddaramaiah had asked his officers to place the Principal Prof Purushotham under suspension.

Taking the officials from the Social Welfare Department to task for the lack of basic facilities at the hostel, the CM had said that 12 to 13 students stay in one room and they are provided bad food due to gross mismanagement of the hostel. He questioned the officers as to why they failed even to visit the hostel despite several complaints and a series of protests.

Siddaramaiah had ordered his officials to initiate an immediate probe and submit him a report. He asked the Principal Secretary of Social Welfare Department Shalini Rajneesh to personally oversee the investigation and take action against the guilty.  

An investigation team comprising officials was sent to assess the nature of irregularities and look into the complaints separately. The investigation report indicted BM Prakash. Based on the report, the government secretary In-charge has suspended the deputy director with a notification to this effect.

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