Published: 18th August 2020
Without pay for 4 months: DUTA to hold 'physical' protest on August 21 at Mandi House after Sisodia's tough statement
For the past four months, employees of the 12 DU Colleges have gone without salaries and pensions, said teachers. The Delhi Government has queried why there is a shortage of funds to pay teachers
The teachers of the University of Delhi (DU) have called for a physical protest at Mandi House in New Delhi on August 21 with the demand to release grants-in-aid for salaries and pension of 12 DU colleges under the Kejriwal-led Delhi Government. The faculty and staff in these colleges have not received their salaries for the past four months. In a press conference on August 18, the DU Teachers' Association (DUTA) said that the teachers "urge the Delhi Government to see reason and to not destroy these units".
For the past four months, employees of the 12 DU Colleges have gone without salaries and pensions, said, teachers. "Despite numerous DUTA letters and memoranda, the matter has remained unresolved. The DUTA has given a call for a Physical Protest on August 21. We will form the human chain at Mandi House starting at 2 pm. If not allowed to hold protest, we will be courting arrest," said DUTA Treasurer and Physics teacher Dr Abha Dev Habib.
DUTA also addressed the allegations made by Deputy Chief Minister and Education Minister of Delhi Manish Sisodia in a statement on August 6. Sisodia had blamed the DU teachers of politicising the issue, "The inability of Delhi govt-funded DU colleges to pay staff salaries despite a 70 per cent increase in budget allocation in the last 5 years indicates corruption. The reason is clear. There have been multiple complaints of corruption in the administration of DU colleges. That’s why they are resisting or delaying the formation of Governing bodies and rejecting nominees appointed by the Delhi government. I had written to DU Vice-Chancellor last month about these corruption allegations and am yet to receive a response."
"DU last year’s budget (2019-20) of Rs 242.64 Cr was adequate to meet all their expenses, the previous year’s budget (2018-19) of Rs 216.13 Cr was adequate to meet their expenses, why is DU now complaining of inadequate funds despite Rs 27 Cr increased allocation in last two years alone?" asked the Delhi Deputy CM. "Apart from DU colleges, the Delhi government also funds many of the Universities that come directly under the administration of its Education Department. We never hear instances of them running out of funds or unable to pay the salaries of their staff," he added.
DUTA President Dr Rajib Ray said that it is extremely unfortunate that the Delhi Government has resorted to such "anti-employee" tactics in order to resolve its differences with the university. "Withholding grants citing flimsy excuses such as non-formation of Governing Bodies, the paucity of funds, enquiries set up in a few colleges and now corruption charges on these colleges smacks of deliberate attempts to cover up for their faults. Moreover, penalising employees in this fashion is incomprehensible since the employees are in no way responsible for any of the above," he added. "We wish to remind the Delhi Government that these 12 DU Colleges are amongst the best colleges of the country and the teachers, students and employees will not tolerate the wilful destruction of these premier institutions," he added.