Calcutta University (CU) is making leave rules stricter for its 700 postgraduate teachers.
According to officers of the state higher education department, the move follows a letter from the University Grants Commission (UGC) seeking an immediate detailed report on the existing leave rules for the teachers.
The UGC also wants the university to explain why it has not implemented the leave rules recommended by the commission in 1998.
A long-standing complaint that the university is reluctant to adopt a concrete policy regarding leave rules for teachers had apparently prompted the UGC missive.
The rule restructure is likely to curtail a number of facilities enjoyed by the CU teachers, said the education department officials.
Casual leave is expected to be reduced from 12 days annually to eight days a year, while fully-paid special medical leave might be scrapped. Earned leave can be reduced from 33 to 30 days a year.
Currently, it is not mandatory for the teachers of the university to sign attendance registers. That, too, might change under the new rules. Applications can be made a must for availing of leave before and after listed holidays.
Unlike other universities registered with the UGC in the state and outside, CU follows its own set of rules in respect of granting leave to its teachers. Leave rules conform to the UGC guidelines elsewhere.
The CPM-controlled Calcutta University Teachers' Association (CUTA) pressured the university into following its own rules, stated an education department official. Concerned with the latest development, the association held an emergency meeting last week to discuss the matter.
'The leave rules that are being followed by CU at present, by and large, follow the guidelines suggested by the UGC and the West Bengal Council for Higher Education. We are trying to examine if there is any gross disparity,' said Sankhayan Choudhury, general secretary, CUTA.
The state higher education council formulates major policies of the government related to higher education. Its leave guidelines, modelled on the UGC norms, were sent to CU two years ago. The university did not adopt the leave norms despite several reminders.
'The UGC is firm in its stand this time. In the letter, it has indicated that grants to CU might be stopped if the university fails to restructure the rules in tune with the pattern recommended by the commission,' an education department official signed off.