Mumbai: With the University of Mumbai (MU) moving ahead with its exams, the protesting non-teaching staff has decided to escalate their agitation.
The Maharashtra State Universities and College Employees Joint Action Committee, an umbrella body of non-teaching staff at the state's non-agriculture varsities and their affiliated colleges, has threatened to begin a full-fledged indefinite strike at universities and colleges from February 20, if the government doesn't heed its demands for payment of salary arrears and filling vacant posts.
The staffers' body, which counts around 2,000 employees at MU and additional 6,000 employees at MU-affiliated colleges among its members, has support from various degree and junior college teachers' associations.
"We don't want the students to suffer, but at the same time we want the government to meet our long-pending demands," said RB Singh, chief advisor of the employee association.
A university official said that most of the ongoing winter session exams will be over by February 20. The university was forced to cancel exams for various courses including LLB, MSc, and MCom last week after the staff started boycotting exam-related work. However, the tests were resumed on Monday, following a rebuke from the state government to the university.
The tests are being held according to the original timetable, except for the papers missed on February 3 and 4. All the papers slated for February 3 will now be held on February 15. Of papers to be held on February 4, law papers have been postponed to February 10, while the remaining have been scheduled for February 16.
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