Protesting against the delay in filling up of vacant faculty posts and the way academic reforms are being brought about in Delhi University,44 of its teachers were on a day-long hunger strike near the Vice-Chancellors office on Tuesday.
According to DUTA president Amar Deo Sharma,the association had taken a unanimous decision to hold the one-day strike on Tuesday.
Almost 1,000 teachers registered themselves for the one-day token strike. While some teachers were not able to make it to the venue in the morning,they reached in the evening to support us. Almost all prominent organisations from the university support the protest, said Abha Dev Habib,who teaches at Miranda House and is a DUTA executive member.
The university has not followed UGC guidelines of 2006,that called for the implementation of reservation policy at entry-level posts,4,000 teaching posts are vacant with more than 60 per cent teachers working as temporary teachers. Despite repeated attempts on our part,the Vice-Chancellor has not made any effort to enter into a dialogue with DUTA, Khanna said.
D Manjit,who teaches history at Dyal Singh College,said,Of around 200 teachers at my college,only 110 are permanent teachers. Others have been appointed on a temporary basis. Last year,a post in the history department was filled by appointing three guest lecturers. The same position could have be given on an ad-hoc basis.
The gathering was also addressed by Kiran Walia,the Delhis Education Minister,who is also a former DUTA executive member and P K Biju,an MP from Alathur,Kerala.
The strike was held despite the university registrar telling the DUTA president that teachers on strike would not be paid.
The registrars letter also said that all leave for 28th August stands cancelled and asked colleges and departments that a record of teachers attendance must be maintained and a copy of it should be forwarded to the university.
University officials,on the other hand,said that most colleges held classes on Tuesday.
Umesh Rai,Director of South Campus,said,I have spoken to around 20 principals of colleges like Maitreyi,Maharaja Agrasen,Deshbandhu and others. They told me that classes were not disrupted by the strike. While names of teachers on leave on Tuesday will be sent by colleges on Wednesday,we have received information from the departments. Except two teachers from the Department of Modern Indian Languages,there was not a single teacher who did not take classes.