In order to qualify for Central funding, state governments no longer have to follow a University Grants Commission (UGC) rule on extending the retirement age of teachers, a new circular has said.
In 2007, the UGC extended the retirement age for college and university teachers from 60 years to 65 years. In order to be eligible for Central funding towards salary arrears, states had to follow this and other conditions as part of a “composite scheme”.
However, an August 14 circular from the human resources development ministry has said that state universities will continue to receive an 80% share from the Centre towards four years of arrears even if they follow their own retirement age procedures. Last year, Maharashtra government had announced that it would extend the retirement age from 60 to 62 years. The release of arrears will benefit more than 20,000 teachers across universities in the state.
“After taking into consideration the views expressed by several state education ministers during the conference held in 2010, the central government has decided to de-link the condition of enhancement of age of super-annuation from the payment of central share of 80% arrears to the states,” said the new circular. “Bearing in mind that the question of enhancement of age of retirement is exclusively within the domain of the policy-making power of state governments, the issue of age of retirement has been left to the state governments to decide at their level.”
In an earlier arrangement, arrears due to teachers across the country from 2006 until 2010 were to be paid through 80% contribution from the Centre and 20% from the state. This meant states had to follow certain conditions in order to be eligible for the money. However, following opposition, the Centre waived the retirement age condition.