DU teachers gherao VC office against appointment of guests teachers on permanent posts

New Delhi, Dec 4 (PTI) Protesting against a circular mandating appointment of guest teachers on permanent posts, Delhi University teachers on Wednesday entered a building housing the vice-chancellor's office after breaking three gates and allegedly painted graffiti on the historic structure.

The Viceregal Lodge Estate houses the office of the DU vice-chancellor. Almost 5,000 teachers, cutting across party lines, had earlier gheraoed the building, and then entered its premises by breaking three gates leading to the office.

The call for an indefinite strike was given by Delhi University Teachers' Association which is led by Left-backed Democratic Teachers' Front (DTF) but it has received support from Congress-backed Academics For Action and Development (AAD) and right-wing outfit National Democratic Teachers' Front.

The walls of the building were painted with slogans 'End slavery and humiliation', 'Our right, Absorption', '#VC down', allegedly by teachers who have occupied the VC office.

According to a teacher, when they reached the office, the VC was not present and some of his staff members were there, who also left when the teachers entered the building.

Almost 200 teachers are inside the council hall, where the Academic Council meeting is held.

Rupesh Shukla, a professor at the College of Vocational Studies, said, 'We had given a time of three days to the vice-chancellor to have talks with us but there was no response from his end. We want that there should be one-time absorption of all teachers and promotions that have been denied for long be given to them.' Shukla said that teachers have been advised against harming the university property since it is 'their university' also.

Dr Rasal Singh, a member of NDTF and the varsity's Academic Council called the strike 'historic'.

'Justice should be done with the teachers of DU. Their demands are justified. For the last one decade, promotions and appointments have not happened. They are ending ad-hoc appointments. These problems should be treated with sensitivity,' he added.

The teachers chanted slogans against the administration in the Council Hall of the office.

The Delhi University Teachers' Association (DUTA) had called a strike and urged teachers to boycott all official duties.  The decision to go on strike has been made on the basis of DU circular issued August 28 which mandates that only appointment of guest teachers can be made against substantive vacancies arising for the first time in the current academic session.

The teachers are demanding the withdrawal of the circular and a one-time regulation for absorption of ad-hoc teachers.

Last month, the Jawaharlal Nehru University students had occupied the administration block of the varsity during protest over hostel fee hike and had also painted graffiti on the walls, following which a case was registered by the police. PTI SLB AAR