DU exams not to come under ESMA

7-member group to suggest changes to Delhi University Act disbanded

The HRD ministry’s u-turn on its move to bring examination, evaluation, teaching and learning activities at Delhi University under the ESMA comes days after the UGC set up a seven-member working group under former member of the commission VS Chauhan to suggest changes in the Delhi University Act.

Bowing down to a vociferous protest by Delhi univeristy teachers, the Centre on Saturday announced to withdrawn its move to bring various activities at the university under the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA).

The Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry has also “disbanded” the seven-member working group set up by the University Grants Commission (UGC) on its instruction to study the Delhi University Act and suggest changes in it to bring examination, evaluation, teaching and learning activities at the university under the ESMA.

“The suggestion to ban strikes in the examination services came from some affected students during the DUTA (Delhi University Teachers Association) strike. We have examined it and are not going ahead with the suggestion… In view of the above decision, and in accordance with the direction of HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar, the working group constituted by UGC, as per MHRD letter, is being disbanded,” R Subrahmanyam, HRD ministry's higher education department secretary, tweeted.

He also sought to dispel the apprehensions of the teachers over the UGC's recent directive to all central universities for adoption of the Central Civil Services Conduct Rules to bring their teachers and other staff under its ambit, saying that the government has no intention or plans to curb the freedom of speech.

The directive had triggered apprehensions among teachers that the Central Civil Services Conduct Rules could be used to gag them as the rules bar the central government employees from making public statements against the government.

The HRD ministry’s u-turn on its move to bring examination, evaluation, teaching and learning activities at Delhi University under the ESMA comes days after the UGC set up a seven-member working group under former member of the commission VS Chauhan to suggest changes in the Delhi University Act.

“HRD Ministry, vide its order dated September 12, 2018, has directed to constitute a working group to study the Delhi University Act with the perspective of relevance and uniformity in today's context including bringing exam/teaching/learning/evaluation under the Act of Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA),” the UGC had said, notifying the constitution of the panel in an official order on October 4.

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DU exams not to come under ESMA

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