College staff unions to file PIL on AICTE’s diktat

Sakal Times
Friday, 23 March 2018

Pune: Worried over reduction in faculty-student ratio from 1:15 to 1:20, All India Private College Employees Union (AIPCEU) along with Affiliated Engineering Colleges Teachers Association (AECTA) and Private Educational Institutions Employees Association will again file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court over the matter.

Pune: Worried over reduction in faculty-student ratio from 1:15 to 1:20, All India Private College Employees Union (AIPCEU) along with Affiliated Engineering Colleges Teachers Association (AECTA) and Private Educational Institutions Employees Association will again file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court over the matter.

“The Supreme Court had asked us to solve the matter with All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) amicably since already a case was filed against AICTE. But despite sending to AICTE a letter about the problems and worries of professors, we did not get any positive response from them. They say it will not affect jobs, but many private institutions have started cutting off staff from their colleges. Therefore, we are again filing a petition before the  SC,” said KM Karthik, president of AIPCEU. 

AIPCEU has a strength of more than 10,000 registered members inclusive of teachers and professors. Recently, AICTE announced the decision which spread unrest among the 
teaching faculty.

The announcement of changes in student faculty ratio was to be effective from this academic year (2018-19) and has left professors bewildered with a fear of loss in job. The professors have claimed that this new system will create large-scale unemployment, hampering the future of students and jeopardise the educational infrastructure of the nation.

AECTA and PEIEA sent a letter to AICTE highlighting the consequences of implementation of new student faculty ratio 1:20. 

“The total workload of each faculty is about 331 hours, with four years of students (approximately 240 students), as per AICTE norms. The actual faculty student ratio required is 1:12.

However, taking advantage of new procedures, some private managements or colleges are terminating many faculty members. In the interest of protecting the fundamental rights of teachers, non-teaching employees working in private engineering colleges across the country request AICTE authorities to withdraw the new ratio and continue with the ratio 1:15 which was being followed till 2017-18,” stated in the letter.
AIPCEU appealed to professors from across the country to sign up for the PIL which will be filed in the Supreme Court within a couple of weeks.

Early this month, Sakal Times had reported, with the implementation of the 1:20 rule, 25 per cent of professors are likely to be laid off from engineering colleges, resulting in shutting down of two-thirds of the colleges in the next five years, claims an association of the faculty.  

On the contrary, AICTE officials claimed that this move will ensure more jobs to professors. There are about four lakh professors registered with AICTE. Many institutions have interpreted the new rule as injustice to the teaching staff, resulting in untimely lay-offs. 

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