Almost all DU exams came to an end last week and the centralized evaluation process was supposed to begin at 13 centers on Tuesday. But not even a single of the 3,000 teachers on evaluation duty turned up after a boycott call by the Delhi University Teachers Association (DUTA).
As a result, exam results of undergraduate courses in the Delhi University could be delayed this year. The reason why teachers have refused to evaluate the answer sheets is in protest against a UGC notification which increases their work load and may lead to around 5,000 temporary and guest teachers losing their jobs.
The association is opposing a notification by the University Grants Commission (UGC), which increased the workload of assistant professors from 16 hours of ‘direct teaching’ to 24 hours per week. For associate professors, it went up from 14 to 22 hours per week.
“The boycott is for four days. The future course of action will be decided at the general body meeting on Saturday,” said DUTA president Nandita Narain.
DUTA contends that the Public sector banks should be allowed to recruit directly from business and engineering schools to reduce the acute shortage of staff. Bank Board Bureau will build a new hiring strategy in consultation with the Center. The move may lead to the retrenchment of temporary, guest and ad-hoc teachers.
According to the teachers’ body, the notification would also make promotions difficult. DU teachers are promoted on the basis of the notorious Academic Performance Indicator (API), which assesses via a point system for different parameters, including student feedback.
“The API has been made more stringent and emphasises on research. But now teachers have been assigned extra workload, leaving little time to prepare for quality lectures and research,” said Rajesh Jha, who teaches political science at Rajdhani College.
In this row between DUTA and the center, one can only hope that the students don’t stand to suffer due to the unnecessary stress caused by delayed result.