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Delhi University modifies teacher recruitment criteria, draws flak

As per the new rules, the process for the final selection of candidates will be conducted in two stages— assessment through presentation and interview with the selection committee. Abha Dev Habib, the secretary of the Democratic Teachers' Front, demanded the SOP be rolled back, saying no new criteria for selection should be introduced when the selection process is underway.
Last Updated : 11 June 2024, 14:00 IST
Last Updated : 11 June 2024, 14:00 IST

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New Delhi: The Delhi University has modified its eligibility criteria for the recruitment of assistant professors in colleges, introducing an additional layer of "presentation".

The move has drawn flak from the teachers' community which has demanded a rollback.

The varsity has raised its minimum eligibility from the earlier 50 to 55 points with a relaxation of five points for SC/ST/PwD candidates in its recently notified Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for teacher recruitment.

As per the new rules, the process for the final selection of candidates will be conducted in two stages— assessment through presentation and interview with the selection committee.

The presentation will be assessed based on several factors, including "humility, passion and zeal for teaching," a notification by the varsity read. Candidates will also be asked to write an essay on the day of the presentation for the assessment of their writing skills, the June 3 notification said.

The varsity has also made changes in the weightage given to different components used in the assessment of the candidates.

"Objective parameters such as academic record, experience and research performance have been clubbed together for 20 points in the 100 points marker while subjective parameters have been given high weightage making the assessment highly arbitrary," Maya John, a member of the varsity's Academic Council, said.

The faculty member, who called the change arbitrary and the rationale behind it unclear, said the new SOP must be opposed as it will restrict the number of applicants.

"Far from a coincidence, the new DU guidelines have surfaced in the light of growing criticism regarding the quality of ongoing interviews and the resulting displacement of many long-serving ad hoc teachers," she added.

Abha Dev Habib, the secretary of the Democratic Teachers' Front, demanded the SOP be rolled back, saying no new criteria for selection should be introduced when the selection process is underway.

"The SOP issued is against the interests of serving teachers as it reduces the number of candidates who can appear before the Selection Committees. Appointments in many colleges are pending and many colleagues who were displaced are waiting to join back," Habib said.

"The SOP adds a layer of presentation in the selection process which is to be done by a centralised committee. This will lead to over-centralisation of the process. Single window for appointment, without the say of the College, will pave the way for centralised corruption," she stressed.

Mithuraaj Dhusiya, an elected Member of the Academic Council, said the SOP violates the UGC 2018 guidelines.

"The SOP released by DU on 3.6.2024 violates the UGC Regulations 2018. This SOP introduces additional conditions of recruitment such as the 'Presentation Assessment Committee' which finds no mention in the UGC Regulations 2018 binding on all universities and colleges. This draconian SOP needs to be immediately rolled back," he said.

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Published 11 June 2024, 14:00 IST

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