DIBRUGARH, April 9 - The four-day boycott resorted to by the Dibrugarh University Teachers� Association, Dibrugarh University Officers� Association and Dibrugarh University Employees� Association over non-implementation of pension for the retired teachers, officers and employees, ended on Friday with a warning to the concerned authorities that the employees of the varsity would be forced to undertake extreme democratic protests in the future in the event of failure on the part of the authorities to listen to their just pleas.
The Dibrugarh University, which was recently accredited with �A� grade by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) was practically paralysed during the four-day boycott. Classes and official works were severely affected during the agitational programme.
It must be recalled that the Assam Legislative Assembly having amended the Dibrugarh University Act, 1965 in March 2013, paved the way for the grant of pension to the eligible retired teachers, employees and the family pensioners, responding positively to the demand of the retired teachers and employees.
The Government of Assam notified the amendment vide Notification No. vide No. LGL 133/2012/6 dated Dispur the 30th May, 2013. The Authority of the University, immediately after the said amendment of the Dibrugarh University Act, introduced the GPF scheme, withdrawing the CPF, which was in force prior to the said amendment.
Professor Lakhiram Saikia, working president of the coordination committee of the three organisations told newsmen that the authority of the University by taking into consideration the amendment of the Act, disbursed 1/3rd of the pension amount to the eligible retired employees from November 2013.
He further said that the Government of Assam vide order No. AHE, 431/2014.34 dated 9th February, 2015 provided Rs 2 crore only as financial assistance to the University for disbursement of pension during the financial year 2014-15.
Subsequently, the Government of Assam conveyed to the Dibrugarh University on February 21, 2015 that for disbursement of financial assistance for the purpose of pension, the University should sign an MoU with the State Government, he said.
It would be pertinent to record that Section 30(A) of the Act (inserted after amendment of the Act in 2013) states that the grant of pension and family pension shall be regulated by the Assam Services Pension Rules, 1969. The University authority, however, discontinued the payment of 1/3rd of the pension amount enjoyed by the retired teachers and employees due to non-receipt of required financial support from the State Government.
Being deprived from both the benefits, i.e., pension as well as Contributory Provident Fund, the serving and retired teachers and employees of the University have been passing days in utmost uncertainty, Professor Saikia said.
The leaders of the coordination committee said that the executive council of the University in its meeting held on October 24, 2016 assured the delegation of teachers, officers and employees� associations that they would solve the problem within ten days after discussing the matter with the Education Minister. Though they met the Minister, there was no effective outcome till date, they said.
Meanwhile, the Dibrugarh University Post Graduate Students� Union (DUPGSU) and the AASU unit of Dibrugarh University have extended full support to the agitational programme.
The agitating leaders of the three organisations are on record to have stated that they have resorted to such an agitational programme at the cost of the students for fulfilling their long-standing legitimate and genuine demand, as the life of the retired teachers and employees is quite pathetic due to lack of pension benefit.
They urged the Dibrugarh University authority and the Government of Assam to take necessary action for grant of pension to the eligible retired teachers and employees of the University so that the members are not compelled to further intensify their agitational programme for fulfilling their just demands. It may also be mentioned here that about 140 contractual teachers engaged by the varsity in different departments and centres of higher education have been demanding equal pay for equal work. The contractual teachers have alleged that they do not even get half of what their regularised colleagues receive as salaries for similar nature and same hours of work.