Published: 27th February 2020
Appointment to 300 posts in three Kerala varsities stuck due to fund crunch
The posts to be created includes that of professor, associate professor and assistant professor. The Syndicates of the three varsities had already started preliminary steps for the recruitment
The appointment of over 300 faculty members in Kerala and Calicut universities and also in Cochin University of Science and Technology (Cusat) is stuck in limbo due to fund crunch. The Higher Education Department had recommended the creation of 325 teaching posts in the three universities that have been grappling with faculty shortage.
The posts to be created includes that of professor, associate professor and assistant professor. The Syndicates of the three varsities had already started preliminary steps for the recruitment when the state budget came as a bolt from the blue. The state budget 2020-21 dashed the hopes of the three varsities as Rs 90 crore worth of grants for the next fiscal was slashed. While Rs 35 crore was slashed for Kerala University, the grants for Calicut University and Cusat were cut down by Rs 40 crore and Rs 15 crore respectively.
As per rough estimates, the varsities will incur an expense of Rs 40 crore in the form of salary and pension if the appointment of 325 teachers is carried out. With Rs 90 crore already slashed, the varsities are finding the fresh appointments financially un-viable.
According to a Syndicate member of Kerala University, the government has not allocated even one-third of the plan fund earmarked for the current fiscal. A senior official of Calicut University alleged step-motherly treatment towards the varsity by the government. According to the official, all universities, except Kerala, Calicut and Cusat, received a 10 per cent hike in a grant. Expecting increased assistance from plan fund, we had diverted our own fund for various projects. As a result, the varsity is facing fund crunch, said the official. Employees' organisations in the three varsities have now demanded a freeze on new teaching posts unless the government agrees to proportionately allocate grant from the budget.