Teachers at 12 DU colleges threaten protest over non-payment of salaries
- On Sunday, teachers from different colleges also alleged that they have not been paid regular salary since 2019 and said that nearly 1,200 teachers at these colleges were finding it difficult to make ends meet.
Teachers at 12 Delhi University colleges that are funded by the Delhi government on Sunday threatened a “complete shutdown of the Delhi University” and hitting the streets in protest, alleging that they have not received salaries for the past three-four months.
On Sunday, teachers from different colleges also alleged that they have not been paid regular salary since 2019 and said that nearly 1,200 teachers at these colleges were finding it difficult to make ends meet.
Officials at the government-funded colleges alleged that they have not received grants for the fourth quarter that was supposed to be released in November last year, and due to which they were struggling to pay salaries to their staff since December.
A Delhi government spokesperson said, “All funds have been released by the Delhi government as per the rules.”
The 12 fully state-funded colleges in DU have been at the loggerheads with the Delhi government since 2019 over the delay in the release of grants. The Delhi government had last year alleged that a special audit sanctioned by them revealed financial irregularities in these colleges indicating a “big fraud” and “ghost appointments”.
Sujit Kumar, executive member of staff association at Bhim Rao Ambedkar College, said, “Our colleagues say they don’t even have the means to come to college or borrow money. Pension is also not being paid. We have no choice but to hit roads now [to protest] because it is about our survival.”
Kumar added that they have written multiple letters to various bodies, including Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) to make efforts to resolve the matter. “We have requested them for a strong and decisive action programme including the complete shutdown of Delhi University. Only then the authorities will take notice of our plight,” he said.
Subodh Kumar, president of the staff association at Maharaja Agrasen College, alleged, “Both the teaching and non-teaching staff have been struggling to make ends meet. We have to pay the school fees of our kids and instalments to banks… The college received the third quarter grants in December after which we were paid the pending salaries till November. No one has been paid in these colleges after that.”
During the press conference on Sunday, the teachers also pointed out that not just the salaries but “medical bills, scholarships, telephone and electricity bills also remain unpaid. “Officials at Deen Dayal Upadhyaya College (DDU) said they were served a notice by the south civic body last month after it failed to pay its pending property tax dues of ₹3 crore.”
“The college was shifted to a new building in 2016. Following that, we had sent a proposal to south MCD asking it to assess our property tax. They responded in 2019 and asked us to pay ₹3 crore and also told us that it will be charged yearly. How do we pay this huge amount when we have not been able to pay the salaries of our teaching and non-teaching staff since November last year?” said Principal Hem Chand Jain.
A senior official in South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), who wished not to be named, confirmed that a notice has been issued to DDU College. “The corporation has issued a bank attachment notice to the college since it has not paid its pending property tax,” he said.
Similar situation prevails in other 11 colleges, including Keshav Mahavidyalaya, Shaheed Rajguru College for Applied Sciences for Women, Maharaja Agrasen College, and Acharya Narendra Dev College, where teaching and non-teaching staff has not been paid since December last year.
Officials also raised concerns over the possibility of an increased tax slab for their employees next year. Ravi Toteja, principal of Acharya Narendra Dev College, said the college could not pay salaries to its employees since last December. “If we don’t pay the staff their salaries by the end of this financial year i.e March 31, it will be counted as income for the next financial year. Their tax slabs for the next financial year will increase. Because of the delay in the release of funds colleges are also not being able to calculate the tax to be levied on salary?” he said.
The 12 colleges which are affiliated with the Delhi University and are fully funded by the Delhi government are Acharya Narendra Dev College, Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar College, Bhaskaracharya College of Applied Sciences, Bhagini Nivedita College, DeenDayal Upadhyaya College, Aditi Mahavidyalaya Women’s College, Indira Gandhi Institute of Physical Education & Sports Sciences, Keshav Mahavidyalaya, Maharaja Agrasen College (DU), Maharshi Valmiki College of Education, Shaheed Rajguru College of Sciences for Women and Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies.