Substitute teachers in colleges without salary for over a year

Substitute teachers in colleges without salary for over a year

Srinagar: In an irony of sorts, the substitute teachers working in Kashmir colleges under a University Grants Commission (UGC) programme are without salary for more than a year now while the college professors whom they have replaced are drawing salaries without teaching anything.
The aggrieved teachers were hired over the years by the Higher Education Department (HED) under the Faculty Improvement Programme (FIP).
They have been working in place of the non-PhD permanent faculty who, they said, have been given permission to pursue higher research by the department.
While the permanent teachers are on the payrolls of the HED along with pursuing their higher research degrees, the substitute teachers have not been paid by the department for more than a year now, the aggrieved teachers told Kashmir Reader.
With a substitute teacher entitled to around Rs 50,000 a month, the teachers said that their hard-earned money, totalling in lakhs, was pending with the HED.
“It has been a year now since I was relieved from the college, but my salary has not been released yet,” an aggrieved substitute teacher said.
The substitute teachers, who had been working at the Islamia, SP and Women’s colleges, MA Road, Srinagar, said that they were bearing the brunt of a dispute between the UGC and the three colleges.
The UGC, they said, had barred the colleges from spending money on the teaching faculty as the institutions had failed to renew their accreditation from the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC).
However, another substitute teacher, who had been teaching at the Government Women’s College, Nawakadal, told Kashmir Reader that the NAAC accreditation renewal was not the reason for the delay in their salary.
Even though the Nawakadal college had renewed the accreditation, the teacher said that his salary was pending for the last 13 months.
He said that they were compelled to approach the UGC “at our individual level because the college authorities did not pursue the issue of our salary with them”.
“The officials at the colleges don’t send the utilisation of our services, so we have to fight our cases on our own,” he alleged.
The teacher said that one of his colleagues’ salary, which amounted to around Rs 5 lakh, was “withheld for the last five years”.