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PGI Chandigarh Professor alleged for using fake data in published research to face final decision

PGI Chandigarh Professor alleged for using fake data in published research to face final decision

Chandigarh: A PGIMER Chandigarh faculty accused of using fake data as a basis of his research published in a journal in 2014, is going to face the final decision as the governing body meet in the first week of November is going to make a call on the matter.

A confirmation to this effect was made by the Director PGIMER, to the daily Tribune. The doctor, on the other hand is going to superannuate at the end of the month, added the daily. The doctor has faced 4 enquiries in the matter till now.

The professor and Head at the Pharmacology department at PGI was accused of “fraud”  in a research paper in the year 2014 for allegedly showing the fake data of the helpline calls received by the department.

According to the media reports, the drug information unit (DIU) at the PGI received just one helpline call in three years duration from 2011 to 2013, but in 2014, three doctors of the department including the HOD claimed in a research paper that the unit had 56 calls in a month. The said research was published in a peer- reviewed Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research

According to The Tribune report, since the matter came to light, 4 set of enquiries have been done in the matter. While the 1st three set of independent enquiries held the doctors guilty, the fourth set of enquiry done by single-member panel gave a clean chit to the professor.

1st Inquiry

The first inquiry was conducted in 2014 by the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research  after which the journal holding the doctor guilty, decided on retraction of the research paper and blacklisting the author.

“Our final and firm conclusion was that the editorial and peer reviewers have been duped by the authors by sending an article based of non-supportive data. This article has tarnished the name of our journal and has wasted serious editorial resources and time. We have taken decisions to retract the article from our journal,” the enquiry stated.

2nd inquiry

After the published report came into light, in 2015, a four-member inquiry committee was set up under one of the senior professors at the institute then, Dr Savita Malhotra.

The commitee concluded that Dr Chakrabarti failed to provide any evidence of 56 calls mentioned in the research paper. The inquiry report had found that “ there is a clear discrepancy in the record provided and that which Dr Chakrabarti claims.”

3rd inquiry

The case then was forwarded for inquiry to the PGI Ethics Committee committee that comprised of retired judges, ethicists and BN Goswamy as members under the chairmanship of late Prof KS Chugh.

The committee was of the opinion that ‘the published data was not supported by documents provided by the authors. The publication of this paper tarnished the reputation of the institution.”

4th inquiry

The fourth inquiry was handed over to a single-member panel headed by Dr D Behra who has given a clean chit to Prof Amitava Chakrabarty.

Dr Jagat Ram, PGI Director without speaking anything on the fourth inquiry findings he said that everything depends on the decision taken after the general body meeting.

“The matter will be brought to the governing body in the first week of November. Whatever are the findings of current and previous inquiries, they will be tabled in the meeting.” Dr Ram stated to The Tribune.


Source: with inputs
10 comment(s) on PGI Chandigarh Professor alleged for using fake data in published research to face final decision

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  1. When publication is required for any personal benefit and there is no knowledge or interest to do honest research, scientific misconduct is very much possible. Any prospective research without ethical committee approval and monitoring should be considered as false. There are many newly started medical journals ready to publish anything without following pre-set publication guidelines and peer review process.Till now I am not aware of any teaching medical faculty being punished for scientific misconduct in any private medical college. A significant number of publications from private medical colleges are seen in newly started medical journals.I already published an article on how a section of teaching medical faculty were publishing dissertations of their students as their own in little known national/ international journals just for promotion. In some instances, the college Principal did not even verify the facts with ethical committee (Many private medical colleges still have ethics committee on paper only) before promotion orders are given. A corrupt management may support and promote corruption only. The central health ministry should start a separate cell to deal with complaints of scientific misconduct and should award punishment from dismissal to imprisonment if guilt is proved.The BOG looking after MCI should start verifying all promotions given by the medical college principals and debar the faculty from acting as a guide to postgraduate (M.D.,/M.S.,) students. Nothing is more pathetic for a student to work under a professor who never did any honest research to get promotion.

  2. Falsification of data is quite rampant in research papers published or delivered by faculty members of many institutes of repute. Actually, unlike industry, where traceability and documentation is stressed, maintaining reproducible data is not stressed in these institutes.

  3. user
    Prof Vithal K Dhulkhed October 23, 2018, 7:36 pm

    The rules for promotion for a teacher should not be solely based on all or none law of whether he has published original paper or not.There should be a scoring system based on multiple criteria e.g. such as academic performance indicators API conceived by UGC. This will encourage voluntary research . A teacher should know how to do research.But he should not be forcefully compelled to do it. Under duress genuine publication is the causualty. Judging the ability of a teacher solely on the single all or none criteria of publication is unscientific and unjustified.The rule of compulsory publication should be replaced by multiple criteria such as API

  4. A Harvard Medical College Cardiologist has Published 30 fake papers on Stem cell research in Cardiology. If that is the scenario in Harvard..what about other universities.

  5. The biggest SCAM/ FRAUD in this academic worlds is Research paper publication and earning PhD degrees. Bot are the most NON Standardised processes…highly subjective and very very poorly regulated. Theses scams have killed so many people..which we fail to acknowledge. The fraud research and fake PhD’s have ruined the health sector. Why do we value them so much..I don’t get it and punish people with the hard earned , standardised degrees like MBBS.