Among the thousands of protesting ad hoc teachers demanding absorption into immediate positions in Delhi University, most have been working under the “temporary” condition for well over eight years. The Indian Express spoke to some of them about their experiences, their academic backgrounds and what has gone wrong during their extended periods as ad hocs.
Raman Kumar Singh (52), 16 years as ad hoc teacher of History
Singh has worked as an ad hoc teacher in Vivekananda College for the last 10 years. Before that, he worked in the same capacity at Aurobindo College for three-and-a-half years; at Swami Shraddhanand College for one-and-a-half years and at Dyal Singh College for a year.
He completed his PhD in 1999 from Delhi University. He also did his BA, MA and MPhil from DU. He also completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Indian Council for Historical Research in 2003.
“At Vivekananda College, interviews for permanent posts were advertised only once in 2014… they were never conducted. I think overall, across colleges, posts have been advertised four times, with only a handful of interviews actually taking place. I have spent so much time in this university that I had never really considered looking elsewhere for work,” he said.
Urmil Bharti (40), 12 years as ad hoc teacher of Computer Science
Bharti has worked as an ad hoc teacher at Shaheed Rajguru College of Applied Sciences for Women since 2012. Before that, she had worked as an ad hoc teacher at Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies for five years. She is currently doing her PhD from DU. She joined the university with an MS from DAVV, Indore.
She said she had joined the university after quitting her corporate job of nine years at an MNC because of love for teaching: “I’ve never felt like leaving this university to seek a teaching job at a private university. It’s a good university with good students. At our college, we teach girls from under-privileged backgrounds and I derive a lot of satisfaction from my work.”
In July 2007, she gave birth to her son. “As there is no maternity leave, I did not join work after the summer vacation… I only joined in the next round of ad hoc appointments in December. I went without pay for four months but many others choose to join work four days after childbirth,” she said.
Dipak Maity (35), 7 years as ad hoc teacher of Bengali
Maity has been the sole teacher in Kirori Mal College’s Bengali department for the last five years. Before that, he had taught at Dyal Singh College for two years. He did his PhD from DU in 2016. He had done his MA from DU, and his BA from Calcutta University.
“As the only teacher in my department, I am also the teacher-in-charge and I do all the duties of a teacher-in-charge, including admission duties. I am trying to get a permanent position somewhere in West Bengal, which is where I have my home; if I get it, I will go. My first choice will always be DU but I need security. Even my wife is working as a temporary teacher at Visva Bharati in Santiniketan,” he said.
Vijay Kumar Bhatia (40), 13 years as ad hoc teacher of Political Science
Bhatia has been working in an ad hoc capacity at Ram Lal Anand College for the last 10 years. Before that, he was at PGDAV College for one-and-a-half years, Khalsa College for a year and Shivaji College for a year. He did his BA from DU and joined JNU for his MA. He continued to study in JNU till the completion of PhD in 2008.
In his 10 years at RLA college, posts were advertised thrice but interviews were never conducted: “I’ve studied in DU, and I want to teach here. I am from Delhi, my family is here and I need to look after my aged mother. I have had 24 articles published in journals but still need to beg for work in the streets.”
Abhishek Kumar Singh (42), 10 years as ad hoc teacher of Mathematics
Singh has worked as an ad hoc teacher in Kalindi College for the last 10 years. Before that, he had also worked in that capacity at Patna University for six years. He completed his PhD from Patna University in 2009.
“I don’t know who we can pin responsibility on for this situation. Posts get advertised every few years and we apply but no interviews are conducted. I don’t know what goes wrong. I have stuck to Delhi University all these years because of the dignity of carrying the university’s name. Even if we become a mazdoor here, outside we can bear the name,” he said.