Joint director highlights illegal conversion of aided to unaided institution | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Joint director highlights illegal conversion of aided to unaided institution

Jun 17, 2024 07:28 AM IST

The Joint Director of Higher Education has issued a formal letter to the management of KV Pendharkar College, Dombivli, addressing the illegal conversion of the college from an aided to an unaided institution

Mumbai: The Joint Director of Higher Education has issued a formal letter to the management of KV Pendharkar College, Dombivli, addressing the illegal conversion of the college from an aided to an unaided institution. The letter also cited the non-payment of salaries to teachers and non-teaching staff for May, attributing this to the management’s failure to submit the necessary records.

Joint director highlights illegal conversion of aided to unaided institution
Joint director highlights illegal conversion of aided to unaided institution

In response, both the alumni and the teachers’ organisation organised a protest and hunger strike outside the college on Friday. The protest aims to draw attention to the illegal actions of the college management and the financial hardships faced by the staff due to unpaid salaries.

In May, KV Pendharkar College, the first aided college in Dombivli, announced its decision to shut down its government-aided sections, planning to transition to a completely unaided educational institution in the academic year 2024-25. The college’s teaching and non-teaching staff in the aided sections have been instructed to remain confined to a designated room during duty hours. According to a notice dated May 31, they are permitted to use the toilet and canteen facilities but are prohibited from accessing any other part of the college premises. Violation of this directive will result in disciplinary action.

After receiving complaints from the alumni and the teachers’ union, the Joint Director wrote a letter to the management on June 13. The letter stated, “The government is unable to pay the salary of the staff due to the college management failing to provide necessary records for the salary.” It emphasized the illegal nature of the conversion process undertaken by the college management, which has bypassed legal and regulatory frameworks.

On Friday, Dyaneshwar Mhatre, a Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) from the Konkan region, joined the protest. Mhatre called on the government to halt the management’s illegal transition of the college from an aided to an unaided institution.

Vijay Pawar, president of the Maharashtra’s Union of Secular Teachers (MUST), criticised the University of Mumbai’s (MU) response to the issue. Pawar stated, “MU is not acting decisively in this case. According to the rules, MU can appoint an administrator for the college. However, MU is delaying the process. We urge MU and the government to address this matter promptly and find a solution.”

An officer from MU disclosed that the university has appointed a retired judge to review the situation. The university will take further action based on the judge’s recommendations.

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