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Jharkhand: Government professors and teachers on mass leave today

Protest against proposal to scrap UGC, replace it with HECI

Jamshedpur, Aug. 2: Classes in all the constituent colleges are expected to hit as
government professors and teachers will be on a mass leave tomorrow.

College teachers in constituent colleges across the state will be on a
mass leave to demand the implementation of seventh pay commission
payscale and also the centres proposal to scrap University Grants
Commission (UGC). The autonomous body UGC set up in 1956 is to be
replaced with Higher Education Commission of India that college
teachers in Jharkhand have protested.

While teachers will be on mass leave tomorrow, about 50 teachers from
across the state will go to Delhi to protest against the Centre’s
proposal under the banner of All India Federation of Universities and
College Teachers Organisation (AIFUCTO) outside the Parliament.

About 10 teachers from Kolhan University will also leave for Delhi
tomorrow leaving colleges with the scarce number of guest faculty and
college staff.

Student activists and teachers are protesting against the proposed
move to dismantle the University Grants Commission (UGC) and replace
it with the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI).

The students felt the design of the proposed HECI carried several
dangerous implications for the future of higher education in India.
“The Ministry claims this reform of replacing the UGC with the HECI
will provide more autonomy and facilitate holistic growth of the
education system. But a reading of the content of the proposed move
reveals that the intention of the Ministry is just the opposite,” said
students.

“If the proposed amendment happens, it will kill existing higher
education institutions, which today allow students from deprived
backgrounds to come and study,” said a student.

The Ministry’s decisions, including imposing self-financing and
government fund cut in the name of autonomy, the proposal to scrap UGC
and the latest declaration regarding ‘Institutes of Eminence’, pose a
major challenge to the future of affordable higher education in the
country.

“The newly proposed HECI will have no grant giving power and that
power is now being completely taken over by the Ministry directly.
This is nothing but an attempt of direct political control over
universities by the party in power.

In the last four years, we have seen how the ruling party has unleashed its political vendetta against universities,” said an activists.

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