Defend Public Education
With Deo Kumar as the candidate for the EC, the DTF has fielded a panel of young yet experienced activists for the forthcoming AC-EC Elections.
शिक्षा का निजीकरण नहीं सहेंगे
Say NO to NEP | For quality, social justice and democracy in education
This has been a difficult year for many. We hope that 2021 is a better and brighter year.
Even as people found themselves struggling against the biggest health crisis and economic slowdown furthered by the lockdown, the Government has taken major policy decisions. The Union Government has used the COVID pandemic to unleash relentless assaults on social security, democratic rights, and the common citizen’s access to educational and professional opportunities. Its anti-people agenda has prompted large sections of the working people to build resistances and oppose unilateral policies that seek to dismantle welfare, social justice and institutions that cater to public needs. The anti-worker amendments to the Labour Code that eliminated the employers’ obligation to provide regular employment and service benefits was followed by the assault on agrarian rights. Now public-funded higher educational institutions like universities and colleges are now being pushed towards an unprecedented phase of privatisation and financial vulnerability through the NEP.
Against this backdrop of skulduggery, DU has announced teachers’ elections to the Academic Council and Executive Council in February 2021. DTF realises that at this crucial juncture, statutory bodies and processes must be robustly defended against vested interests. It had provided a stiff resistance to the semester system and FYUP in the past and is again committed to fight anti-teacher and student policies in these statutory bodies. It has hence fielded a panel of young yet experienced activists who have proven their mettle in leading struggles and intervening on behalf of teachers on a wide range of issues that confront the fate of public-funded higher education today.
DTF candidate for the Executive Council:
Assistant Professor of Hindi, Rajdhani College, Deo Kumar has served the Academic council for two consecutive terms and before that in the DUTA Executive for two terms. He has been a tireless soldier for the cause of social justice and inclusiveness. He has also played a key role in ensuring that the University makes enabling provisions for all teachers who have been applying for promotions.
DTF candidates for the Academic Council:
The DTF panel for the Academic Council has activists who have proven credentials in leading struggles:
Associate Professor, Political Science Dept, Deshbandhu College, Member, DUTA Executive (2017-19, 2019-2021)
Assistant Professor, English Department, Hansraj College, Former Member, DUTA Executive (2015-17, 2017-2019)
Associate Professor, History Department, Motilal Nehru College (Evening), Member, Academic Council (2019-2021)
Assistant Professor, Central Institute of Education, Member, Academic Council (2019-2021)
The 4 December 2019 DUTA movement ensured the retention of all working adhoc teachers despite the DU administration’s move towards mass displacement through the August 28th letter. The 5th Dec Record of Discussion also arrested displacement owing to implementation of EWS quota. Clinching the demand for one-time Absorption / Regularisation of thousands of teachers employed in adhoc capacity for years is of paramount significance. The recommendations of the Committee on Absorption must be brought to the EC in a time bound manner and the demand for a MoE/UGC one-time Regulation for absorption of ad-hoc and temporary teachers as per DoPT Roster must be realised through a mass movement.
The DUTA-led pan-India movement against the unacademic and arbitrary API under CAS 2010 and resolution of the issue of counting of past services through 4 December movement finally paved the path for much awaited promotions. While promotions have started in the University after a decade, a significant section of teachers fear stagnation or loss of number of years because of the requirement of PhD for the Associate level under CAS 2018. We need to collectively fight for relief for such cases. Equally important is to ensure a uniform scheme of promotion to Professorship for both University and College teachers.
The crisis in the 12 Delhi Govt. colleges was orchestrated by the University Administration on behalf of the ruling party at the Centre and the arrogant response of the Delhi Government which also has welcomed the NEP and attempted to force colleges to use students’ fees to pay salaries. This is nothing but a tacit support to the agenda of privatization espoused by the NEP.
Even though the NEP has not yet been ratified through any legislative process in the Parliament, the university administrations have been arm-twisted to start implementing it from academic session 2021 and a NEP Implementation Committee has been constituted. Online Examinations as well as the “College-University seats” in admission are derivatives of NEP. Provisions of NEP 2020 allow the private and corporate takeover of public-funded universities and colleges through Boards of Governors (BoGs) that will be allowed to operate without regulation, decide on fees, admission policies, examinations, courses to be offered, variable pay, deny permanent jobs and increments and impose hostile service conditions on employees.
After the successful struggle against the 13-point roster in 2018-19, we have to remain on guard yet again as a MoE panel has suggested scrapping of reservation in IITs in the name of eminence.
The continuous struggle on the issue of pension has resulted in relief for option and 3rd categories. The demand to withdraw the Government dircted SLP needs to be strengthened.
We need to ensure setting up of processes that will provide relief to teachers on cases of illegal recoveries.
With the implementation of the NEP, these elections may well be the last as universities will be forced to exclude democratic representation in their governing councils. Despite this imminent threat, powerful groups ideologically or opportunistically aligned to the ruling party are providing support to the NEP and encouraging its hasty cloak and dagger implementation through an arbitrary committee constituted by DU’s Acting VC who is increasingly inclined to the use of emergency powers to summarily decide on issues that require debate and thoughtful consideration.
Elections to the Executive and Academic Council are being held on 12 February 2021 at a very crucial juncture when the very existence of elected representation of teachers in statutory bodies is under threat when the NEP is implemented in its entirety. The DTF appeals to all members of the teaching community to respond to the threats associated with the NEP and push for a decisive mandate against any attempt to dismantle or dissolve the public-funded character of Delhi University by electing the entire DTF panel to the EC and AC.