Russian President Vladimir Putin has fired four senior officials who ran for seats on the Russian Academy of Sciences despite his previous orders.

In a televised meeting last week, Putin indignantly complained that some government officials were elected members of the Russian Academy of Sciences despite his explicit orders not to do so.

The Kremlin on Monday published an order signed by Putin to dismiss four officials including a deputy interior minister and a department chief at the defense ministry. Three of them were listed as having tendered their resignations and one was listed as having reached pension age.

Russia's scientific community has been criticized for giving an easy ride to officials seeking doctoral degrees and scientific titles as a badge of prestige.