University of East London “looking into” Jatinder Ahluwalia’s career

We’re continuing to follow the case of Jatinder Ahluwalia. As we reported on Tuesday, Ahluwalia was dismissed from graduate school at the University of Cambridge years before a University College London (UCL) investigation found had renumbered files to deceive a co-author, and had likely sabotaged his colleagues’ work while manipulating his solutions to improve how his results looked. The results of that investigation came to light as part of a Nature retraction.

Ahluwalia now works — and studies plagiarism, in fact — at the school of health and bioscience at the University of East London. We asked Neville Punchard, the school’s dean, whether the university was aware of Ahluwalia’s past. Punchard replied by email:

I can assure you that  UEL is looking into the matter.

I am sorry, but I am not able to comment further.

We’ll update with anything new we hear. Ahluwalia has not responded to several requests for comment.

6 thoughts on “University of East London “looking into” Jatinder Ahluwalia’s career”

  1. You most likely will not hear anything unless there’s a press release concerning the results of any investigation(s) at UEL. ‘Looking into’ could invariably mean anything–from an investigation to a private conversation between him and the Dean, both, or neither.

    If you ask me, this lack of oversight (hiring someone who misrepresented a lot of things, and not just allegedly), would make UEL look pretty stupid–especially if they stuck him teaching anything integrity related.

    I personally think UEL did not thoroughly reference or background check this guy.

  2. Yeah, they can’t really do anything at this stage.

    They already hired him. It’s their job to background check him & the time for that has passed.

    I think their only hope of taking action would be if he’d lied on his application. This seems unlikely because most academic job application forms don’t ask about misconduct at all. Although some do ask if you’ve ever been sacked from a previous job.

    1. His scientific credibility is gone. He can not be trusted for teaching students, applying for grants, submitting papers. If his job involves any of these he should sacked.

  3. UEL publishes some good stuff, although the number of research active staff is small. The management should clean this mess up for the sake of the research staff and students.

    A full independent and external inquiry should be made and the results published online. Until then Jatinder Ahluwalia should be suspended from any research activities. Not to do so is to harm the reputation of research staff at UEL.

    If Jatinder Ahluwalia thinks that he is innocent of these accusations he should himself call for an independent inquiry and volunteer to suspend himself until the matter is cleared up. Not to do so is to deliberately harm the reputations of his colleagues and in my opinion is an admission of guilt.

  4. How come the other bioscience/pharmacology teaching staff, who must have been consulted on his appointment, as well as the couple who collaborated with him on research at UEL (co-authors of his research papers) didn’t know of his background – these things get rumoured around any scientific community. And what about his academic references – they should have been from previous employers – so why didn’t UEL Biosciences check these directly? If UEL Biosciences cannot accomplish basic quality procedures for their staff then what credibility have their degrees? None, I would conclude. I certainly wouldn’t pay up to 9000 pounds for one.

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