evaluation boycott


In an issued press release by Delhi University Teacher’s Association (DUTA) , the key demands of the association were raised, along with the future course of action for going about the protest was set out as well to make sure their demands get headed.

On 16th January 2020, Delhi University Teacher’s Association (DUTA) issued a press release which broadly highlighted the reconsideration of mode of protest to be carried further and re-entry of teachers into the classrooms.

DUTA General Body Meeting was held to reconstruct the mode of pretests to be observed further, by prioritising larger student interests. Even though teachers would continue to work and take up classes, they will however refrain from evaluation duty and screening as a symbol of boycott. Unsettled ‘key issues’ such as one time regulation for absorption, promotion, pension, recovery and issue of Physical Education (PE) teachers would be the ‘focal issue’ for day and night dharna (protest) outside the Vice Chancellor’s (VC) office.

The DUTA has well devised its protocol to be followed in order to get its demands heard. It calls for taking forward the struggle of one time regulation for absorption by reaching out to Members of Parliament(MPs). It will rewrite to the ‘Visitor’ and the ‘Prime Minister Narendra Modi’ on the matter to seek appointment. In order to gain solidarity from the leaders it will also organize a ‘Long March’ to Parliament during the upcoming budgetary session. It will organise a petition by MPs to the visitors on the issue. All of these are primarily aimed at getting their issues to reach out to both the Houses of parliament: Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, thereby ensuring that their concerns are rendered due importance.

Expressing disdain for the ‘privatisation of education’ that follows the new proposed “Educational Policy” DUTA, resolves to mobilize students and ‘karamcharis’(workers/non-teaching staff) towards a massive citizen’s protests against these policies to reverse the existing trend of ‘commercialisation of education’ and ‘contractualisation of of services’ of teaching and non teaching staff.

The DUTA General Body further, urged the government and the VC to implement the agreement reached on 5th December 2019 in letter and spirit to honor honest honest dialogue towards resolution of DUTA’s pending demands. The General Body boldly ‘warned’ these stakeholders with an ‘ultimatum’ of a months’ time, that they will be held responsible for agitation and unrest caused due to non compliance with the demands.

In their future course of action, the DUTA will again hold a General Body Meeting(GBM) around 15th February 2020 to further escalate the movement circling around the above mentioned key areas of absorption, promotion, pension and recovery of PE teachers, if in case demands are not met with. The DUTA GBM reiterated it’s demand for the removal of Vice Chancellor, as well.

The DUTA seems very reselient and stands rock solid towards going about it’s demands. The student fraternity however holds their own concerns. A first year B.A. (H) Political Science student from Kirori Mal College spoke DU Beat, and said,” We understand the demands of the teachers and we are with them but erratic pattern of the strike has become a hindrance as the classes are being suspended very often.”

Another student Gauri Gupta from first-year, B.Sc Maths (Hons) from Kamala Nehru College raised similar concerns, and said,”The demands of teachers are just and I stand with them,” however, she further added that”I don’t like the cost at which all of this is happening.”

Feature Image Credits: DU Beat Archives

Umaima Khanam

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The deadlock between DUTA and the University of Delhi’s (DU) administration finally terminated on the 16th of June 2018, a result of the meeting between the Vice Chancellor of DU and the DUTA office bearers. Two days later, on 18th June, the DUTA ended their boycott of evaluation of DU examination papers, in the interest of the student community.

While appealing to the DUTA to lift the nearly month-long evaluation boycott, the VC, on Saturday, had taken serious note of the crisis precipitated by the University Grants Commission’s (UGC) 5th March Notification on the Roster. Through a phone call conversation, Executive Council member of the DUTA Yogendra Yadav informed DU Beat , “The meeting between the VC and DUTA had continued for five hours.”

Notably, the DUTA had been agitating against the UGC’s circular dated 5th March that included a number of provisions which would have allegedly denied reservation of teaching positions in smaller departments to members of the ST, SC and OBC communities. Moreover, it would have derailed the process of permanent appointments and displace ad-hoc teachers who have been teaching for many years.

In Saturday’s meeting, the VC had broken the deadlock by assuring the DUTA that the DU administration will try to get all working ad-hoc faculty continued in the new session. Moreover, regarding the issue of the counting of past services, he had agreed to allow a five-member DUTA delegation to represent its position before the University Committee.

Subsequently, on 18th June, the DUTA held an emergency Executive Meeting followed by a General Body meeting in order to decide their future course of action after the VC’s assurances. In the same, the DUTA decided to terminate their evaluation boycott while resolving to take forward its agitation through alternate modes.

DUTA President Rajib Ray told the DU Beat correspondent, “The student community of DU has always been supportive of our struggle including the time of the evaluation boycott. We have taken note of the appeals made by students and we will ensure that examination results are declared on time so that the interests of students are not hurt.”

DUTA Executive Dr. Surendra Kumar who had been an active participant in the DUTA agitation told this correspondent, “While DUTA has agreed to give up the evaluation boycott for the students, we have not agreed to give up our agitation per se.”

When asked about the future course of action, he remarked, “Regarding the Reservation Roster, the DUTA will review the situation after the 2nd July Supreme Court hearing on the Review Petition. The need of the hour is to mobilise wider political support on the issue of the Roster to ensure that the Constitutional rights of the SCs, STs and OBCs are protected.”

The official circular of DUTA summarizing the minutes of the meeting held on Monday concluded, “The withdrawal of the evaluation boycott is in the spirit of empathy and solidarity. It now remains to be seen whether the MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development) and DU’s administration are able to go beyond usual platitudes and are able to show genuine concern for the students and teachers.”

Arushi Chabbra, a student of B.Com Honours who appeared for her final semester exams from Indraprastha College for Women told this correspondent, “We are glad that the DUTA listened to our demands and decided to give up their evaluation boycott. The relationship between the students and the teachers in DU should essentially be symbiotic. We supported them in their struggle, now they must show their support by starting the evaluation process at the earliest.”

Feature Image Credits: India Today


Vaibhavi Sharma Pathak
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Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) as part of its ‘satyagraha’ against autonomisation of the University of Delhi (DU), had called off the evaluation for this semester’s examination papers. The DU administration in their press release pleaded teachers to start the evaluation soon.

The press release quoted teachers’ mandatory duty to ‘actively participate in evaluation process’ according to the ‘service agreements, and Executive Council Resolutions of 2003 and 2014’. Further, it stressed on students, their future and how that can get hampered due to this boycott.

In response, DUTA released a statement which said, “The DUTA was forced to take this harsh step because of attack on Reservation Policy through 5 March 2018 UGC notification and because of fear that some of the DU colleges may be made autonomous colleges.” Teachers have been denied promotions, pensions, and appointments which has led to the discontentment.

DUTA also reaffirmed student support for ‘grave issues that are at stake affect the stability and quality of the teaching-learning process’. The students have previously supported DUTA in its march in Parliament Street and actively responded to the call for suspension of classes.

Shimona Sharma, a graduating student shared that, “As much as I support DUTA’s decision, I also am worried I will miss postgraduate admissions for that. It would be ideal if DUTA can reach a compromise and start with the evaluation of answer sheets of third-year students.” In 2016 too, the DUTA had boycotted the evaluation, but it later exempted the final-year students.

In its retort, DUTA advised the varsity administration to stop reminding teachers of their duties and to enter into a ‘genuine dialogue and take concrete visible steps’. They are seeking assurance towards resolution of issues, and plan to take the evaluation issue at their next meeting on 13 June 2018.

Feature Image Credits: The Indian Express

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On 6th June 2018, the Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) organised the ‘Jansampark’ programme, informing citizens and making them aware of the problems that DU teachers face, with government paying no attention to their demands.

Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) on Wednesday organised the ‘Jansampark’ programme, with teachers and students participating in large numbers outside five metro stations namely Vishwavidyalaya, Rajiv Chowk, Mandi House, ITO, and Central Secretariat.

“This Action Programme was organised to create awareness among the general public about massive problems that teachers of Delhi University were grappling with and finding no solutions to their miseries, teachers had to go on evaluation boycott,” said DUTA in a press release.

People were informed by the teachers and student activists about the sufferings that an average teacher has to undergo on a daily basis. More than 4000 teaching posts are lying vacant in the University of Delhi (DU). Despite the high court order directing the colleges to fill all teaching posts, the University has failed to do so.  The UGC letter dated 5th May 2018 directed the University to change the teaching roster to department-wise and if the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) does not withdraw the letter, the 4000 ad-hoc teachers teaching against these vacant positions are at a risk of being displaced in the beginning of next semester in July.

For the past ten years, teachers have been denied promotions. This has led to a sense of disillusionment amongst young teachers. The retired teachers of the Varsity and karamcharis are being denied pensions. The government is coming up with plans to privatise the higher education institutions through autonomous colleges and graded autonomy. General public was educated about how privatisation will make public education out of the reach of poor people, harming the interest of underprivileged, minorities, and female students.

On 28 March, 2018 Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) and the Federation of Central Universities’ Teachers’ Associations (FEDCUTA) organised the “March for Education” from Mandi House to Parliament Street in the national capital against the granting of graded autonomy to 60 universities which would lead to commercialisation and blatant privatisation of public education.

On 9 May 2018 DUTA announced its decision to boycott evaluation of answer sheets in protest against delay in teachers’ appointment and promotion, lack of absorption of ad-hoc teachers, autonomous college scheme and the change in roster policy.

The Jansampark programme had a good reception from the people of Delhi who asked them to intensify their struggle until their demands are met.

Feature Image Credits: DU Beat Archives
Disha Saxena

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