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HindustanTimes Sat,25 Oct 2014

Presidency professor denied ‘special’ allowance for three years

Sanchari Chatterjee , Hindustan Times  Kolkata, August 23, 2013
First Published: 11:03 IST(23/8/2013) | Last Updated: 11:06 IST(23/8/2013)

A visually challenged professor of sociology at Presidency University, Samit Kar, has written to the Disability Commissioner in New Delhi that he is not being paid his special allowance of Rs. 3,000 a month for the past three years.

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The amount has been approved by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and is supposed to be paid through the college authorities.

Kar, 51, is a diabetic and the disease robbed him of his eyesight in 2004. Presidency authorities paid him the allowance from 2005 to 2011.

Then the university stopped paying him the money. Also, the 3% job reservation allowance under public works department quota is not being given to him.

According to Kar, he had complied with all the university’s demands of presenting entitlement letters from the UGC, his disability certificates for blindness and a bunch of other papers. Yet, the authorities are far from granting him his allowance, and now, the university authorities have stopped taking his calls since April.

“I lost my vision in 2004, as an effect of my undetected diabetes. From 2005, I have been getting the disability allowance, which was R1,500 per month till 2011. But after that, it has stopped and even after getting all the papers from UGC that the finance officer and registrar of the university asked for, I didn’t get my allowance,” said Kar, who has been associated with Presidency for the past 17 years.

“We haven’t received UGC’s approval letter to pay Kar the money as yet. So, it is not possible for us to pay him the money, which the commission sends. It is not in our purview,” said Prabir Dasgupta, registrar of Presidency.

However, Kar had in his possession a letter issued in November 2012, signed by Archana Thakur, deputy secretary of the UGC, that said the commission had already issued the money in Kar’s name.

Kar also claims that he has received copies of letters UGC sent to Dasgupta entitling him for the disability allowance along with other facilities like travel allowance of Rs. 400 per month.

“I have all the letters UGC had issued the university for sanctioning the funds. Our vicechancellor Malabika Sarkar has been assuring me of granting the allowance for the past two years. But, of late, she has been disconnecting my phone calls, after which I chose to resign from my post, for a number of other reasons as well,” said Kar.


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