KATHMANDU, May 17: The part-time teachers of 60 constituent campuses under Tribhuvan University (TU) have announced to hold protest programs against the government and the university for failing to implement the agreement signed with them.
An agreement was signed between the part-time teachers and the government eight years ago when the part-time teachers were on a hunger strike with various demands. The agreement included to form a working panel within a week, find exact number of part-time teachers within a year, prepare certain criteria and recommend for the contracts, appoint them on contracts by fulfilling set standards, and urge TU to increase payment to the teachers on contract.
However, neither the government nor did TU take initiative to address their demands of more than 1,200 part-time teachers, according to Nepal Part-Time Teachers' Association (NPTTA).
“So we have planned to stage sit-in protests in front of the Prime Minister's Residence at Baluwatar from coming Thursday to Saturday,” said Sashi Kumar Sharma, president of NPTTA. “If our demands are not addressed, we will stage a relay hunger-strike at Ratnapark from Sunday,” he warned.
The part-time teachers said they are given a minimal payment. “We have to teach up to 24 periods in a week while permanent teachers teach only 10 periods per week. But we are paid only Rs 360 per period while permanent teachers get at least Rs 2,000 per period apart from other allowances,” said Narayan Koirala, a member of NPTTA.
Ambika Jha, a part-time teacher of Botany at Trichandra Campus, said that they had to pay 15 percent taxes for the Rs 220 per period payment but the permanent teachers did not pay any taxes. “We feel humiliated,” she added.
The part-time teachers have now insisted on getting appointed on contract basis with a monthly salary equivalent to that of a third class gazetted officer of the civil service. “Either part-time teachers should not be appointed or they should be given contract letters,” said Ghamaraj Luintel, member of the NPTTA.
They also criticized the TU authorities for not opening vacancies every six months as per the rules. In last two decades, TU announced only three vacancies under open competition. “The quota for open competition is only 20 per cent while 80 percent of seats are allocated for internal promotions, meant only for the teachers with contracts,” said Narendra Bhandari, a part-time teacher at Lalitkala Fine Arts Campus.
TU authorities have recommended 1,420 new seats to manage adequate number of teachers at TU constituent campuses.