The committees formed by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) have recommended a delayed start to the new session. 

With educational institutions continuing to remain closed, alternatives are being considered to the normal classes, examinations and admissions are being considered with the possibility of shifting on an online medium. While the committees formed by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) are yet to conclude examinations, they have recommended that the new session come to a delayed start for the session 2020-2021.

The two committees formed by the UGC and the MHRD are to look into the issues of loss of classes and conducting classes online. One of these committees that is led by Haryana University Vice-Chancellor RC Kuhad, works on assessing the possibility of online examinations and a new academic calendar to work around and take into consideration the disruptions due to the COIVD-19 pandemic and lockdown. The other is led by Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) V-C Nageshwar Rao and was formed to suggest means to improve online education. Both committees have submitted their reports and a source told the Press Trust of India (PTI): “One panel has recommended that the academic session be started from September than July. The second panel has suggested that universities should conduct online exams if they have the infrastructure and means or wait for the lockdown to get over and then decide a date for pen-and-paper examinations”.

Plans to conduct online examinations have already been met with resistance Delhi University (DU) Executive Council member, Rajesh Jha calling the proposals a “complete mockery of higher education” and Deans of several University departments were said to have termed this form of examination “practically impossible” and “not feasible”. Students and Teachers have also raised concerns and cite technical issues, impracticality and a lack of universal internet access as a stumbling block. The DU online portal for filling up of examination forms has also been unstable and prone to crashing.

However, DUTA has refused to comment on the issue until an official notice is released by UGC.

“I think that starting the new semester in September does have its benefits when it comes to the safety aspect of things. Starting the semester later would cut down a lot of the risk of transmission of COVID. Secondly, with the disruption the pandemic has brought out, maybe a delayed semester would be a good idea to bring things back on track without needlessly rushing exams and the admission procedure” said Prabhanu, a student of Kirori Mal College, Delhi University.

According to officials from the MHRD, the two reports will now be studied and an official announcement would be made soon with guidelines and recommendations.”It is not binding that all the recommendations will be accepted. After deliberating on the feasibility issues and keeping the situation in mind, guidelines will be issued,” said an official. An official from the UGC stated, “The reports are not binding in nature and a mere suggestion to the universities. The recommendations include conducting online exams wherever possible. If a university has the means, including the infrastructure to conduct online exams, they should go ahead with it” speaking of the possibility of online exams. With the status of examinations still shrouded in uncertainty, the possibility of a delayed start to the session may be explored.

Feature Picture CreditDU Beat Archives


Tashi Dorjay Sherpa

[email protected]

Delhi University’s plans to hold online examinations in light of the nationwide lockdown and social distancing have come under fire from the Deans and Teachers.


The nationwide lockdown and social distancing rules mean that even if the lockdown were to be eased, examinations would not be possible. Under these circumstances, Delhi University (DU) has been exploring other options, tasking the Delhi University Computer Center (DUCC) with evaluating the feasibility of conducting online examinations. The deans and teachers, however, have criticised the plans that were supposedly discussed in a meeting of the deans of various departments, senior university officials and the Dean of Examinations, Vinay Gupta over video conferencing.

DU Executive Council member, Rajesh Jha claimed to know the details of the suggestions made in the meeting with the plan being for students to send a 20-minute clip in which four questions were to be answered. It was said that officials suggested eight questions are sent to students and they would have to answer four of them by uploading a five-minute video clip in response. Jha called the proposal a “complete mockery of higher education” and has not been alone in voicing his disapproval for the suggestion. Deans of several University departments were said to have termed this form of examination “practically impossible” and “not feasible”. A professor who was a part of the meeting claimed the following: “Deans said many of the students live in areas where there are connectivity issues and many of them might be good in writing but not fluent in speaking. The mode of examination will not test a student properly.”

Jha belongs to the Academics For Action and Development (AAD), a Congress-supported teachers group that also voiced concern over the “arbitrary and authoritarian proposal of the university administration for online examinations”. The group also claimed that the submission of answers in the oral clips would be made through a third-party platform, which DU officials have denied, saying “We are only exploring how online examinations can be conducted in DU, since this hasn’t been done before. Even if the lockdown is removed, social distancing measures will still be in force, so we won’t be able to hold physical exams”. The AAD, however, said the suggestions showed the “scant understanding of essence of evaluation in higher education and its utter disregard for students’ interest”. It also claimed that “In the name of exigency of COVID pandemic, reforms are being thrust by UGC-MHRD to pave way for the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2019, aiming at privatisation, contract basis and online education”.

The AAD and others have called into question the feasibility citing reasons such as access to the internet and a smart-phone, difficulties in submission and evaluation as well as the chances of tampering and unfair means. “In the background of digital divide and 3/4th of our students coming from socially and economically weaker sections, the online proposition is against the basic principles of equity and social justice” stated the AAD.


Featured Image Credits: Tashi Dorjay Sherpa for DU Beat

Tashi Dorjay Sherpa

[email protected]


Ministry of Human Resource Department (MHRD) Secretary,  Amit Khare addressed issues of ad-hoc teachers and filling up of scores of vacant positions in his inauguration speech at  Shivaji College, University of Delhi (DU). 


Shivaji College witnessed Mr Amit Khare,  Secretary, Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) during the inauguration of the New Wing of the college. Khare’s inauguration speech mentioned the importance of teachers,  asserting that teachers are the backbone of any education system and while working for quality education the challenges faced by the teaching community need to be resolved as well. He stated that detailed discussions were held with Yogesh  Tyagi, Vice-Chancellor, Delhi University to take steps for filling the vacant faculty positions and for promotion of teachers.


 The MHRD has asked the Varsity to resolve the problems faced by ad-hoc teachers and also fill up the scores of vacant positions that lie unfilled. The issue has been a  cause of concern to many after the controversial letter dated 28th August 2019 came into existence which involved the appointment of ad-hoc and guest lecturers. DU teachers have demanded one-time regulation for the absorption of ad-hoc teachers. 


“Our ad-hocs have been pestered by such actions. One of our ad-hocs once advised us not to go into their line of career during our tutorials, this shows the frustration that has risen.  A university of such a high accord is expected to be sensitive to the needs of people involved in the structure. The speech by Amit Khare gives some hope.”, says a student from Lady Shri Ram College for Women who wished to remain anonymous.


The transformation of Khare’s words into concrete actions are awaited. 


Feature Image Credits: Press Information Bureau


Priyanshi  Banerjee [email protected]

As the new semester takes off from today, 1st January, the University of Delhi (DU) halls still witness the indefinite strike of Delhi University’s Teacher’s Association (DUTA) that began from 4th December, demanding permanent absorption of ad-hoc teachers.


Delhi University’s Teacher’s Association (DUTA)’s a month-long strike which was initiated on 4th December 2019, to demand permanent absorption of more than 4500 ad-hoc teachers has continued even till the new semester. The protest led to an amendment of 28th August Circular along with relief given to ad-hoc teachers to sit for interviews for permanent positions by Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD). The MHRD also guaranteed that no ad-hoc teacher would be removed until permanent positions would be filled. However, the demand for permanent absorption of 4500 ad-hoc teachers was not fulfilled that has fueled this on-going agitation.


The teachers had already boycotted evaluation and invigilation duties for the end-semester examinations. The DUTA has still decided to continue their strike which leaves the fate of the students in this semester hanging which can be owned up to to the lack of action by DU administration.


The demands of teachers also consisted of the consideration of ad-hoc time for time-based appraisal. Over 2700 positions in various departments are yet to be filled which have risen due to retirement or resignation in this semester.


Rajib Ray, President, DUTA, told Indian Express that “The call for strike still stands but the teachers will collect syllabi from their colleges to not hamper the studies of the students. We will conduct a review on January 7 to decide the future course of action.”


However, the administration has provided a contrasting view stating that the evaluation is ‘on track’ and there has been no hindrance. Vinay Gupta, Dean (Examinations) said as per Indian Express that, “There have been no issues and the result is likely to be declared by January end.”


Amidst the many conflicting perspectives, an official notification by DUTA as well as the DU administration is required to solve the chaos to ensure proper systematic teaching of students.


Feature Image Credits: newsclick

Chhavi Bahmba

[email protected]




DU will receive INR 100 crore grant from the government for achieving IoE status and aims to raise the equivalent amount on its own.


In September 2019, the University of Delhi was awarded the status of Institute of Eminence (IoE) by the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) on the recommendation of the University Grants Commission (UGC). In order to meet the requirements of the same, the university has launched the ‘Endowment Fund of the Delhi University’ which aims to raise INR 100 crore over a period of five years and has also encouraged alumni to invest in sectors of their choice, which may range from building to research funds. 


This tag allows the University a grant of INR 100 crore from the government over five years and aims to raise the same amount on its own as well. The varsity states that the funds will be, “100% tax exemption and has no restriction on the amount of contribution. The donor can choose the area in which his/her contribution should be utilised. The information on the utilisation of funds will be displayed on the university website and 50 per cent of the funds earmarked for girl students. There also will be a compulsory audit of the endowment by the Controller and Auditor General (CAG) of India.”


According to a circular signed by the Vice-Chancellor, Yogesh Tyagi, the University is currently in the top 500 universities globally according to QS World University Ranking and is aiming to be in top 100 over the next 10 years. However, it lacks new institutions in the field. “To help our students and faculty attain academic excellence, the University would like to provide them with the necessary support, including the best and most modern research facilities and educational infrastructure”, further states the circular.


The letter also suggests, “It will provide opportunities and facilities to enhance the quality of teaching and research and to attract talent from outside the University and make them stakeholders in our growth story. This enterprise will ultimately lead to the University’s role and contribution to the nation-building and to scale greater heights in the global rankings.”


The University is yet to sign an agreement with the Ministry, under which it will lay out the plan to achieve the status of a world-class institution. Public institutions with IoE status are eligible for a government grant of INR 1000 crores. Upon getting the IoE status, DU will have complete academic, administrative and financial autonomy to spend the resources it raises and is allocated.


Recently Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IITD) also launched a global endowment fund of INR 250 crore in presence of President Ram Nath Kovind by 10 founder alumni members. The University states that the fund will be utilised for “each one teach one” providing a student aid of INR 10000 to each student to facilitate their education. 


Feature Image credits: DU Beat Archives


Aditi Gutgutia
[email protected]


The Jawaharlal Nehru University has been, for the past 50 days, since the controversial release of the Inter-House Manual on 28th October. But it all seemed to be over on December 13th, when the Ministry of Human Resource Development released a mediating statement based on talks between JNU Administration, JNUSU and MHRD. However, are all the stakeholder’s satisfied? Read further to find out.

The Ministry of Human Resource Development after a series of talks with the JNU Administration and the JNU Students’ Union put forward the aforementioned statement. In the statement, the MHRD states that the fee of a single occupant room and the double occupant room remain Rs.300 and Rs.600 respectively. While the BPL or Below Poverty Line students will get a concession of 50% on the fee. All of the costs of utilities and services shall be borne by the University Grant’s Commission or UGC. The MHRD has also directed the administration to adhere by the Delhi High Court’s orders and therefore notify JNUSU. Furthermore, the statement has requested the Academic Council to give the students relaxation of two weeks to compensate for the loss of the academic period. In addition to this, the MHRD has directed the JNU Administration to take a ‘Lenient View’ on the incidents that have occurred since October 2019. Lastly, via this statement, the JNUSU has been directed to stop all kinds of dharnas around the administrative, academic blocks and in the residential areas of the varsity staff. The MHRD has urged both the JNUSU and JNU Administration to take immediate steps for the restoration of the normal functioning of the university. It has also been directed that any further issue shall be resolved only via dialogue as per university statutes.

Talking to us, Musaib Ul Haq, the JNUSU hostel prefect, says, “JNUSU has from the beginning of this protest demanded a full rollback and therefore we reject anything which is short of that. Most of our demands have not been met and apart from that, we demanded the taking back of all the cases against agitating students. However, the statements only use the word ‘lenient action towards the protesting students’ which is why we have maintained that the language used in the notice is just unacceptable. Our slogan for these protests is ‘Complete rollback and not an inch back’ therefore for us the talks are still on and nothing is decided yet. Our movement is still on and it will continue, there is no call back of these protests as of now. Apart from this, there was a meeting with the JNU Administration just yesterday wherein all the senior admin members like the Dean of Students were present. But, as of now the movement has not finished and is still continuing.”

Even though the stakeholders in this issue still do not find themselves on the same page but what has become better is that a deadlock has been broken and the JNUSU and JNU Administration have now started a dialogue. As one of the main issues of the protests since its inception is the lack of communication between the students and the administration. Thus, the solution to this problem now seems to be feasible.


Featured Image Credits- ANI


Aniket Singh Chauhan

[email protected]



Who is to be blamed?
The year’s old fame of Delhi University has now turned into sham when thousands of its professors are on roads protesting about the incompetence of university administration. The professors, who have worked relentlessly for years and who have taught the sharpest brains of the country, teach with insecure minds. Approximately 4500 teachers in Delhi University are serving on an ad-hoc basis. This means that they are appointed for a fixed period of 4 months and are reappointed as per the whims and fancies of the college administration.
One of the major reasons for this uproar has been the 28 August circular, which has created a history in itself. Never before had the administration been so cruel to its teachers. The Delhi University assistant registrar in the circular addressed to Principals, Directors, Colleges, and Institutions informed:
“The colleges are…advised to fill up the permanent vacancies at the earliest and till permanent appointments are made, colleges may appoint guest faculty, if required, against new vacancies arising first time in academic session 2019-2020”
This means that the rejoining of the existing 4500 ad-hoc teachers is at stake since the circular clearly states the appointment of guest faculty instead of ad-hoc faculty. The entire teaching fraternity was taken aback. They were earlier hoping for permanent appointments instead of ad-hoc and now they even fear to lose their ad-hoc jobs. Some ad-hoc teachers have been teaching for more than ten years now and have a dependent family. One line of the circular was enough to make them experience sleepless nights.
Here it is important to understand the difference between ad-hoc and guest faculty. The ad-hoc teachers extract a salary as is fixed by the University Grants Commission and are given voting rights equivalent to permanent faculty. Apart from this, they are also involved in all the academic and extracurricular activities of the college/institution. Whereas on the other hand the guest faculty are expected to come, deliver a lecture and go. They are paid a nominal amount per lecture delivered and have no voting rights.
The Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) took the cause of teachers and left no stone unturned to stop the implementation of such draconian circular that deprived teachers of their fundamental right to life and livelihood. Since August, they have been demanding the withdrawal of this circular, but the Vice-Chancellor turned deaf ears. The teachers when went unheard decided to boycott all the Delhi University examination invigilation and evaluation duties and resolved to protest at the VC Regal Lodge. This created a deadlock in the university and without faculty, the colleges are having a tough time in conducting the university final examinations. Who is to be blamed for such ruckus? Did the Vice-Chancellor overlook or is it the administrative inertia? Or is it the politically vested interest of few that have brought the entire education system to a halt? Why is it that whenever the ad-hoc teachers demand permanency, they are instead made insecure about their ad-hoc jobs?
Earlier also, when the voices of ad-hoc teachers strengthened for permanency, the teaching roster was changed from 200 point to 13 point. The reserved category posts as per the 13 point roster would reduce and thus the entire focus and efforts shifted towards getting the 200 point roster back in implementation. After winning this long fight with administration, now when the teachers demanded permanency, they were deprived of their existing jobs and they demanded the continuation of their existing ad-hoc jobs, forgetting about being permanent. Many questions arise. Whether the professors at the most prestigious university deserve such insecurity? Don’t they have a right to life and livelihood? What are the reasons behind the administration’s inaction and government’s delay in filling up the permanent posts? These unanswered questions are probably the reasons for the declining education system in India.

Mansi Babbar
Assistant Professor
University of Delhi

Feature Image Credits: Yudu Ushanandani

DUTA demands boycott over delays in processing promotions, parity for librarians, opposition to proposed New Education Policy (NEP) and other changes.

Convening on 25th November 2019, the Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) came to a few conclusions regarding the long-pending demands of the teachers and their future course of action at the General Body Meeting (GBM). In a press release summarising the discourse of their meeting, teachers expressed their agitation over the illegal Delhi University (DU) circular of August 28th, 2019 that only allows the appointment of guest teachers against full-time posts in departments and colleges, which has adversely impacted the teaching-learning process.

Teachers are also angered with the University’s administration’s inordinate delay in processing promotions for long years, causing harassment and demoralisation of teachers. The demand for stopping of illegal recoveries from teachers and an end to the harassment of the physical education teachers were also raised. Immediate utilisation of the Second Tranche positions of Other Backward Classes (OBC) expansion and implementation of the Kale Committee report also figure in the list of their demands.

The GBM also called upon the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to respond to the demand for a One Time Regulation for Absorption of Ad-Hoc and temporary teachers. The DUTA GBM also denounced the attitude of the MHRD that has found reflection in the University Grants Commission (UGC) Regulations 2018, certain provisions of which threaten to exclude teachers in service due to unjust screening criteria and by not accounting for teaching experience adequately in the selection process.

The DUTA GBM also demanded that “the government/UGC immediately approve the provisions regarding relaxation in Academic Performance Indicators (API) for promotions made by the Academic Council and the Executive Council of the Delhi University to correct an infirmity in the UGC Regulations 2018 which has rendered the scheme meaningless.” The GBM also reiterated the demand for complete parity for librarians with the teachers. It also demands a restoration of the parity of instructors and programmers with respect to pay and service conditions.

The DUTA GBM reiterated its opposition to the proposed National Education Policy of 2019, as a proposal that seeks to privatise higher education and hand over these institutions to privatised the Board of Governors (BoGs) with full powers over educational activities and teachers. The privatised BoGs are to enjoy powers that till now were exercised by the Government or UGC, the Executive Councils and Governing Bodies of colleges. Teachers will have no say in the affairs of educational institutions. It threatens dismemberment of Delhi University (DU) by separating colleges from DU as autonomous units under separate BoGs. The DUTA GBM resolved to broaden the struggle against the proposed NEP through coordinated campaigns and protest actions with teachers, students and concerned citizens across the country.

DUTA President, Rajib Ray and Secretary, Rajinder Ray have also demanded immediate action on the DUTA White Paper on “Acts of mis-governance by the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Delhi”.

In order to press for the above demands, the DUTA GBM has decided on a complete evaluation boycott of the semester-end examinations and an indefinite strike starting from the second week of January in case the MHRD and the DU administration do not respond. The GBM also demanded that all Ad-Hoc teachers be allowed to re-join on 1st January failing which the strike may be advanced. The GBM also resolved to undertake outreach programmes, Jan Sampark programmes, Press Conferences and meetings with leaders of political parties and Members of Parliament (MPs) and other participatory action programmes will be held to highlight the issues and to spread awareness about the issues. The GBM also decided to join the All India Trade Union Strike scheduled for January 8th, 2020.


Image Credits: India TV

Bhavya Pandey 

[email protected]

The protest against hostel fee hike and draconian hostel rules in Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) has entered its second week.

On Wednesday, 13th November, the hostel fee hike was rolled back partially during the Executive Council (EC) meeting. The decision was announced through a tweet by R Subrahmanyam, Education Secretary, Government of India, which was later retweeted by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD).


According to the revised structure, the single room rent has been revised to Rs 200 per month, while the double bed rent has been revised to Rs 100 per month. The outrage surrounding the new manual emerged as the single room rent of Rs 20 per month was increased to Rs 600 per month whereas, double room rent was increased from Rs 10 per month to Rs 300 per month. However, the one-time mess security remains at Rs 5,500, the service charges remain at 1,700 per month along with the earlier utility charges. Moreover, Economically Weaker Section (EWS) students would receive assistance.

The Executive Council (EC) is the supreme decision-making body of the Varsity, which also has representatives from the JNU Teachers Association (JNUTA). The venue for the EC meeting was changed on Wednesday without prior information to the Students’ Union and the JNUTA. DK Lobiyal, JNUTA president quoted to PTI, “The meeting was supposed to be held at the Convention Centre inside the campus but when three EC members, professor Sachidanand Sinha, Moushumi Basu, and Baviskar Sharad Prahlad reached the venue, there was no meeting there.”

JNU students won’t call off the protest any time soon; if the draft manual is approved, it will be implemented soon. 14th November was observed as National Protest Day, wherein JNUTA along with DUTA, Federation of Central Universities’ Teachers’ Associations (FEDCUTA) and several student bodies rallied to save public-funded education in India, from Mandi House to Jantar Mantar.

Among the discontentment against the administration, activist and former JNU student, Umar Khalid spoke to The Quint, “The government and the JNU Vice Chancellor, Jagadesh Kumar, is giving the matter another twist. First, they said that the economically weaker sections will be aided by the administration, later the administration has come out with a press release stating that Below Poverty Line (BPL) students will be given concessions in the fee structure.” He further questioned the Government and media’s stance in propagating lies.

JNUSU’s former President Sai Balaji acknowledged the curfew and dress codes withdrawal, and said, “The government has played a cruel joke on the marginalised sections of students today.”  The JNU administration contested that the Varsity has not increased the fee for the past 19 years, regarding which JNUSU demanded a discussion before the proposed hike. The protest for the same continues.

Featured Image Credits: Noihrit Gogoi for DU Beat

Anandi Sen

[email protected]


Due to the varsity’s lack of action despite the perpetrators having been found guilty, a sexual harassment survivor wrote to the VC, PMO and MHRD, complaining about the lack of initiative taken.


Despite the varsity’s Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) finding the head of the Chemistry department (HoD) guilty 18 months ago in case of sexual harassment report, no action has been taken. The case is claimed to have occurred on April 2018, and despite the ICC’s confirmation, the university has taken no action. A day before the DU Executive Council (EC) meeting, the alleged survivor has written to the DU Vice-Chancellor, the PMO (Prime Minister of India), the MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development) and others stating that the university has delayed in giving her justice.


In the letter, the alleged survivor has stated that while another EC meeting has been called on October 25, her sexual harassment cause has also been called for discussion. Alleging that she was not informed about her case in the previous EC meetings, she said that she got to know that to decide her case,  the VC has constituted a new three-member committee, consisting of 2 EC members and one member from outside the University, as reported by The Times of India. The survivor expressed distress at the knowledge that the varsity has let the guilty HoD and the six other members of the Chemistry department walk free.


The survivor- whose identity has not been revealed to protect her privacy as per Supreme Court directives on cases related to sexual harassment- alleged that the University failed to abide by its regulations regarding sexual harassment at workplace.


Under Section 9 of the code of regulations, the survivor was to be provided interim relief, which she claimed she was not while the case was being enquired by the ICC. The letter also states that despite the case being reported on May 2018, no decision has been taken and no punishment has been given to the guilty party, which is a direct violation of Section 8(4), which states that the UGC regulations on sexual harassment, the Executive Authority of the University has to take a decision within 30 to 45 days after a report has come out.


The committee made by the VC is extra-legal and does not find a place in either the POSH law or the UGC Regulations 2016- the survivor thus stated that this quasi-judicial body cannot be allowed to discredit the ICC report.


She also revealed that on September 15, the Chemistry department called for an interview for the position of assistant professor on a guest basis in which she applied but the HOD was a member of the selection committee despite the ICC saying that he cannot be a member of the selection committee if she applied.


Feature Image Credit: DU Beat Archives

Shreya Juyal

[email protected]