New Delhi: Delhi University teachers have decided to call off the boycott of evaluation of undergraduate exams in protest against the new UGC norms to ascertain their academic performance.
The Delhi University Teachers Association (DUTA) said the decision has been taken after the ministry and UGC officials agreed to set up a committee to resolve their demands.
However, a formal announcement of withdrawl of the boycott will be made after the decision is ratified in a General Body meeting of the teachers' body.
"The negotiations have begun and the administration has agreed to our minimal demands of setting up a committee to resolve our long standing demands.
"In order to create an atmosphere wherein negotiations are fruitful in order to press for final resolution of our problems, and in order to continue a sustainable movement to ensure resolution of pending matters, the DUTA Executive resolves to withdraw the boycott of evaluations and boycott of Staff Council Committees," DUTA President Nandita Narain said.
Teachers have been boycotting evaluation of UG examinations since 24 May in protest against amendments to UGC regulations that, they argue, will lead to job-cuts to the tune of 50 percent and drastically decrease pupil-teacher ratio in higher education.
When the protest was started, the DUTA had boycotted evaluation for all years and later extended it to even the admission process. Teachers lifted the boycott of evaluation for final-year students on by June 16 and decided to rejoin the admission process on 5 July.
The new gazette notification had increased the workload for assistant professors from 16 hours of "direct teaching" per week (including tutorials) to 18 hours, plus another six of tutorials, bringing the total up to 24 hours. Similarly the work hours of associate professors had been increased from 14 to 22.
The teachers argued that altering work-load norms would have led to massive retrenchment - to the tune of 4,500 - in teaching posts. That amendment has since been withdrawn. However, Narain says they will continue to fight against the API (Academic Performance Indicator) system of promotions for teachers "till it is completely withdrawn".
"We have written to the new HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar already seeking an appointment. We also want a proper roster system for appointments and a committee to look into the promotion policy that DU adopted with retrospective effect thereby, virtually stopping all promotions for eight years," Narain said.