New Delhi: The Delhi University Teachers' Association (DUTA) on Friday urged the Centre to take over colleges run by the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government as they claimed that teachers were not getting proper salaries cuts in budget while political activists were being appointed as head of governing bodies.
DUTA chief A K Bhagi also claimed that teachers had even held demonstrations outside Chief Minister Kejriwal's house but to no avail. "Due to fund deficit, pay cut of teachers is happening since last two yrs in 12 colleges under Delhi government. We've held demonstrations outside CM's house, gone to Deputy CM, nobody listened to us. We want the Central govt to take these colleges under its wings," Bhagi said.
The teachers' body took the strong stance after the Deen Dayal Upadhyaya college told staff members that a part of their salaries was being withheld due to fund-crunch.
12 colleges funded by the Delhi government faced a deficit of about 85 to 90 crores, according to Bhagi
"This problem has been going on for 5 years, earlier funds were delayed, but funds are being cut for the last two years. At present, there is a deficit of about 85 to 90 crores in 12 colleges funded by the Delhi government," said Bhagi.
Alleged misgovernance in several Delhi colleges
The DUTA chief claimed that "misgovernance" was rampant across several colleges being run by the Delhi government and accused AAP of politicising their governing bodies.
"There's misgovernance in 20 more colleges under the Delhi governemnt. Governing bodies in those colleges have been politicized, AAP workers appointed as members," the DUTA president said.
BJP and AAP back and forth over the issue
While the AAP government has repeatedly sought to project its 'education model' as a revolutionary one, the BJP has consistently questioned the claims. BJP has accused AAP of corruption, improprieties and misleading people through publicity on a range of issues. The AAP has claimed that the BJP charges are politically motivated.
Students also facing issues with basic amenities, claims DUTA
DUTA president Bhagi added that not only teachers but students were also facing problems as even basic amenities were not freely available on campuses.
"Even the medical bills of the people are not being reimbursed, there is a problem in allowances. Not only teachers but students are also facing problems as there is no maintenance. Sometimes there is a problem of water, sometimes there is no electricity because the bills are not paid on time," the DUTA president said.
He alleged that the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi Government had appointed AAP members as head of governing bodies instead of academicians.
"Deen Dayal Upadhyay College's notice has come out, so it is being discussed. But the problem is with all the 12 colleges. Apart from this, there is also a governance problem in colleges despite the 95 per cent grant given by the UGC. In these colleges, the Delhi Government has appointed the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) members as the head of the governing body, whereas there should have been an academician. There is tremendous misgovernance out there right now," DUTA president Baghi stated.
Baghi said that they had submitted a memorandum to Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena on these issues. "On July 16, we met the LG and gave him a memorandum. He immediately sent it to the Delhi government. But in response to this, misleading information was given by the Delhi government that the money has been given to the teachers. We took it again and went to the LG and he said that we are taking action on it. Several times we went to the CM's house, where our memorandum is taken from the track, and no official even comes forward. We are continuously protesting about this issue but no one is ready to listen to our problems. So, we want that the central government should takeover these colleges run under Delhi government," he added.
'True face of Kejriwal coming to the fore,' says academic council member
The DUTA president said the situation was very bad and the DDU college had received a notice over non-payment of electricity dues.
"Last month the Deen Dayal Upadhyay College received a notice from North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) that they will cut the electricity if the bill is not paid. And now they are deducting the salary of assistant professors and associate professors. For the last five years salaries were delayed but now they are deducting salaries. The DUTA delegation met the governor and he is also taking forward the issue. The current notice is only for the teaching staff but think if non-teaching staffs whose salaries are Rs 7000-8000 what will they do if they will not get the salary? The true face of Arvind Kejriwal is coming to the fore," said Sunil Kumar Sharma, Academic Council Member, Delhi University.
Krishna Mohan Vats, Executive Member of DUTA said, "This is a very serious issue; this should not have happened. We are taking steps as per the democratic law. We held protests and we are also planning to hold more demonstrations in the coming months against the Delhi government. DUTA delegation is continuously meeting the Governor and we have informed him about our problems. Even we informed the LG that we are not getting our salaries for the last five months. Teaching faculty somehow is managing but the other staffs are facing many problems."
Rajiv Ray, former DUTA President said this year there is a deficit of about 37 crores in the budget presented by the Delhi government.
"Along with Deen Dayal Upadhyay College, 11 more colleges face problems. In Deen Dayal, the deficit is more than other colleges and this is why they are facing more problems. There is a difference of Rs 100 crore in the demand and payment," he said.
"In the quarter in which the payment is given by the state government, the teachers get their salaries and then for three-four months there is a deficit. This is not a new problem but the teachers are facing this issue for the past four years. Every they say find new excuses like they say there are fraudulent employees, sometimes they give audit objection as a reason. Teachers are not getting salaries and retired staff are too not getting their pension," Ray added.
"Every year we have to come on the road but still, we are not getting our full salaries. Even many are not able to pay their medical bills," he added.