Students present. Teachers absent.

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The last two weeks at DU have been frustrating, to say the least, for the undergrads of the 2019-20 session. Although the classes have begun, on paper, yet various courses in many colleges are yet to appoint guest teachers. As a result, classes are yet to begin.

So, what’s stopping these colleges from appointing guest lecturers?

According to these colleges, the university has not yet clarified the changes introduced by the University Grants Commission (UGC) in the recruitment rules.

Now, typically, colleges require about 10-20 guest lectures. But this has thrown a wrench in their plans.

Colleges such as Ramanujan College and Maitreyi College require 20 and 15 teachers respectively, while colleges such as Hindu College, Atma Ram Sanatan Dharma College and Zakir Hussain Delhi College require about 12, 10 and 22 teachers, respectively.

A guest lecturer’s job is to fill in for a permanent teacher while  he/she is incapacitated, or when the class is too big. A guest lecturer used to be paid Rs. 1000 per lecture, not exceeding Rs. 24000 per month. And they used to be recruited according to the colleges’ requirements.

After, the UGC revised the rules, the remuneration has increased, but there has been a change in the selection process. Now, the selection committee consists of the Vice-Chancellor or his nominee, the Dean of Faculty, the DU Department Head and an expert, but no college representative.

Some college officials have asked the university for clarifications, but have not received any, yet.

“We have requirement for commerce, English and psychology. Our old faculty is somehow managing but it’s a huge problem. The university should have clarified the rules,” said S P Agarwal, principal of Ramanujan College.

The Hindu college is in even worse shape with the requirement of guest lecturers in 7 departments.

According to Maitreyi College principal Haritma Chopra, the CBCS is responsible for the increase in demand for guest lecturers with the increase in choices of course.

Du registrar Tarun Das was unavailable for comment.


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Ankita Lal

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