Thiruvananthapuram: PK Biju, a CPI(M) leader and a former Member of Parliament, serves as a syndicate member at the APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University (KTU), headquartered at Thiruvananthapuram. Despite residing in the capital city with his family, he is reported to have received more than 12 lakh rupees in travel allowances (TA) by submitting invoices for traveling from Thrissur to Thiruvananthapuram in a private vehicle. The Save University Campaign Committee has lodged a formal complaint with the Vigilance authorities, backed by documentary evidence obtained from the Assembly, regarding this matter.
As a former MP, CPI(M) leader PK Biju is entitled to complimentary first-class train travel. In spite of this, he takes lakhs of rupees as travel allowance from the KTU. It has come to light that he has received Rs 12,20,898 over a span of two years by submitting travel bills for trips from Thrissur in a private vehicle. While Biju resides in Thiruvananthapuram with his family, his address listed in syndicate is Kottayam. Furthermore, his wife is a Professor at University College, Thiruvananthapuram.
The proof of PK Biju’s alleged corrupt activities can be found in the written response provided by Higher Education Minister R Bindu in reply to a query posed by MLA Anwar Sadat during the Assembly session. Starting in 2021, the Pinarayi government appointed six additional individuals affiliated with their party including PK Biju, to serve as members of the syndicate at the KTU, which was established in 2014. It is also clear from the response given by R Bindu in the assembly that these people received the highest amount in the form of travel and sitting fees. It is noteworthy that the governor has not yet signed the amendment to make them syndicate members.
Syndicate members of KTU receive the highest amount in terms of TA sitting fee and inspection fee as compared to other universities in the state. Kerala and Calicut University Syndicate members who conduct college inspections get Rs 750, while KTU Syndicate members get Rs 5000 for a college inspection. Former MP PK Biju is the highest paid.
RS Sasikumar, Chairman of SAVE University Campaign Committee informed that they have filed a complaint against this to the vigilance authorities.