The Delhi University Teachers' Association (DUTA) has submitted a petition to President Ram Nath Kovind seeking his intervention for the absorption of 4,500 ad hoc and temporary professors working in the varsity. Addressing a press conference, DUTA chief AK Bhagi said over 10,000 teachers have signed the petition which was launched earlier this month.
DUTA launched the online petition on February 2 addressed to Kovind, who is also a visitor of the university, and made an appeal to teachers to sign it at large. Through this petition, the DUTA said it demands that the Centre take cognisance of and resolves this problem. The teachers' body demanded that the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the Ministry of Education together should frame the modalities to absorb these teachers by bringing one time extraordinary ordinance/bill.
"DUTA submitted a copy of this petition with all signatures to the President of India (who is also visitor to DU). DUTA had also submitted a copy to PMO, Minister of Education, UGC chairman and the vice-chancellor of the University of Delhi," Bhagi said during the conference. "Over 10,000 people signed this petition. Not only ad hoc, temporary and permanent teachers of the University of Delhi have signed this petition, but many principals, professors, deans ... have also come in support of this cause..." Bhagi said.
He alleged that "well qualified bright and talented teachers" have been forced to work on ad hoc or temporary basis for years due to the lack of will and action on part of the university and college administration. Bhagi said the absorption of existing ad hoc and temporary teachers will be a step towards "restoration of equality, dignity of teachers, gender equality, and maintenance of quality in higher education in University of Delhi".
He accused the DU administration of denying these teachers their fundamental right to work with dignity and stress-free lives. Noting that the livelihood of ad hoc and temporary teachers is always in danger, Bhagi said these teachers are deprived of all rightful benefits such as annual increments, promotion, medical benefits, leaves. "Female colleagues have been denied their right of availing maternity for a long time and child care leaves. The service terms and conditions of ad hoc teachers violate the principle of equal pay for equal work," he added.
With PTI Inputs