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DU mulls higher pay for ‘high quality’ faculty

Varsity feels differential salary need to attract ‘world-class’ talent; teachers’ association plans protest

By Basant Kumar Mohanty in New Delhi
  • Published 18.02.20, 1:38 AM
  • Updated 18.02.20, 1:38 AM
  • 2 mins read
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Delhi University vice-chancellor Prof. Yogesh Tyagi, sources said, has started working towards implementing some proposed initiatives including differential salary structure. (Telegraph file picture)

Delhi University is set to introduce a system of differential remuneration to attract “world class faculty”, using the relaxation in norms allowed to Institutes of Eminence.

Vice-chancellor Yogesh Tyagi, sources said, has started working towards implementing some proposed initiatives, including different salary structures.

The university had proposed several initiatives in the application it had submitted to the University Grants Commission in 2017 for the eminence (IoE) tag, which provides for relaxation from several UGC norms for the chosen institutions.

The human resource development ministry (MHRD) had selected DU for the status in 2019.

“While many who are committed to research and teaching are driven by motivations other than monetary, we recognise that talent is mobile and we must offer better remuneration to high quality faculty than we currently do,” the IoE application had said.

A copy of the application was shared with members of the varsity’s executive council (EC) last week.

“Public universities in China today offer facilities and salaries that are globally competitive. We are pleased to see that MHRD envisages that incentives can be paid to outstanding faculty under the IoE scheme,” the application said.

The EC, the supreme body to decide on the varsity’s overall growth, had discussed the IoE issue at its last meeting in October but has not yet given the go-ahead for the proposed initiatives, council member Rajesh Jha said.

However, the universtities authorities seem to have gone ahead with the plan to implement them.

The salary structure at public universities is now decided by the government. The salary is uniform for faculty members of the same rank and differential remuneration would mean varying salaries for teachers of the same rank.

The IoE application also mentioned a proposal to appoint faculty on a tenure basis, which means contractual appointment.

“Except the name, there is nothing attractive in the IoE scheme. This is a ploy to privatise the institution. A dual salary system will create resentment among faculty members. This will damage the institution,” Jha said.

The university has appointed M.K. Pandit as officer on special duty (OSD) for implementing the IoE initiatives that involve setting up nine new centres on different subjects.

In December, vice-chancellor Tyagi had written an open letter to alumni to donate for an endowment fund to help DU generate Rs 1,000 crore for implementing the IoE measures.

The HRD ministry will give up to Rs 1,000 crore, provided the university provides the matching share.

The IoE status, a scheme of the Narendra Modi regime, seeks to offer the tag to 10 public-funded institutions with additional funds of up to Rs 1,000 crore in five years and relaxation from rules to help them figure among the top 500 global institutions in any of the reputable international rankings in ten years.

Ten private institutions would also get the tag so that they too can get relaxation from norms but not funds. Apart from DU, Banaras Hindu University and Hyderabad University and four IITs have been selected for the tag.

DU Teachers Association president Rajib Ray said the teachers would protest the new ideas.

“There is no dearth of talent in India. Dual salary is not a sound system for a public university. We will oppose it,” Ray said.

No comments could be obtained from OSD Pandit and VC Tyagi despite phone calls.