The statewide examination boycott by senior college teachers to make their demands heard came in for sharp criticism in a meeting convened by the Vidyapeeth Vikas Manch (VVM),a forum of academicians.
In the meeting on Friday,the teacher community was accused of stooping to undesirable levels for their demands. The VVM appealed teachers and the State government to resolve the crisis to safeguard students interest.
Terming the teachers demand to exempt a section of them from NET-SET as indecorous and against the spirit of their profession,civic activist Vivek Velankar said teachers should give up this demand.
Teachers are opposing the government decision to make NET-SET compulsory. This cannot be a acceptable rationale,as there cannot be two opinions when it comes to updating and improving ones skills and abilities, he said.
Observing that the other major demand of releasing pending dues was on the verge of being fulfilled,Velankar appealed teachers to withdraw their strike in the interest of the student community.
HV Desai College vice-principal Anil Kulkarni termed the demand of teachers of a written assurance from the government as an egoistic one.
While the state government has almost agreed to release the Sixth Pay arrears,and the minister concerned has made a statement on the floor of the House,teachers seeking a written assurance is an adamant stand. Assurance given on the floor of the House has more legality and is more binding. There is an Assurance Committee to ensure promises made in the House are kept, he said.
VMM representative Dhananjay Kulkarni and University of Pune senate member Gajanan Ekbote and AK Walunj also expressed their views in the meet.
Teachers of government universities in Maharashtra,barring Aurangabad and Nanded universities,have been staying away from examination-related works since February 4. They have been demanding Sixth Pay arrears for the period between January 1,2006 and January 1,2010,and regularisation of services of non-NET/SET teachers appointed between September 19,1991 and April 3,2000. More than 40,000 teachers are united under the banner of the Maharashtra Federation of College and University Teachers Organisation (MFUCTO) in the fight.
Justifying teachers agitation,president of Pune University Teachers Association,Hema More,said the agitation had to be extended due to inaction and apathy of the state government.