The post-retirement benefits of Dipali Bhattacharya, a former principal of the Government College of Art & Craft, are likely to be withheld in connection with the exhibition of “fake” Tagore paintings, according to a source in the higher education department.
Bhattacharya had organised the exhibition at the college from February 27 to March 8 to commemorate the poet’s 150th birth anniversary. She retires on December 31.
The higher education department has prepared a report on the paintings, which a court-appointed probe panel had found to be fakes. “The report and related documents are now being examined by the higher education minister’s office. The government is likely to take the final decision before Puja,” said a senior official.
Artist Suvaprasanna said: “The very room in which Tagore had done some paintings when he stayed there (the college) for a few days was used to produce the fakes.”
On Tuesday, some former and current students of the college and a teacher submitted a petition at New Market police station urging that Bhattacharya’s passport be confiscated as they feared she may seek refuge at her home in London.
The students, Saptarshi Ghosh, Tamal Krishna Goswami and Prithwish Daw, and Prabal Dasgupta, teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts and Jadavpur University, also demanded that an inquiry be held against Jayanta Bandyopadhyay, who Bhattacharya had said was the source of the paintings.