NEW DELHI: An official from Human Resource Department, Delhi University stated that there is no proposal to bring Delhi University under ESMA (Essential Services Maintenance Act). HRD, DU along with a section of teachers of the university deem the ministry’s attempt bring DU under ESMA act “an attack on their democratic rights”.
The University Grants Commission (UGC), the higher education regulatory commission, directed the university to constitute a working group to study Delhi University Act with the intent to bring university’s Exam, Teaching and Learning Evaluation under ESMA Act, on September 12, 2018. In a response to the order a HRD official of DU tweeted the following today.
R.Subramanyam, IAS, Secretary, Higher Education tweeted: “There is no such proposal to bring Delhi University under ESMA. The suggestion to ban strikes in the examination services came from some affected students during the DUTA strike. We have examined it and are not going ahead with the suggestion”
A teacher member of DUTA further clarified the issue tweeting “UGC’s ESMA circular is exploring the ‘possible alterations that may dissolve the University’s institutional autonomy and suspend the democratic rights of its academic community”, tweeted Shihabudeen Kunju S, Delhi University Teachers Association.
The academic association further their stance against the move by calling it a “draconian” and “foolish move”. The association also called it “Government’s move to curb the democratic rights of teachers through ESMA and CCS indicates desperation and nervousness about introducing changes that cannot stand up to academic scrutiny”
About ESMA Act
ESMA or the Essential Services Maintenance Act was issues by the Parliament issued in 1994. The act was drafted in order to ensure that certain services such as public transport and health services are delivered properly without obstructions such as strikes by groups or associations such as employees or students associations as done during DUTA, or by any other such factors.