UoP VC says employees protest unjustified as all demands accepted

PESHAWAR: Amid the continuing protest by the teaching and non-teaching staff of the university, Vice-Chancellor of the institution, Dr Mohammad Idrees, on Sunday preferred to explain the university’s version through media instead of sitting with the protesting employees and getting the matter resolved.
n a detailed press release, he claimed to have already accepted all the demands of the protesting employees and their protests held no justification.

The teaching and non-teaching staff of the university under the aegis of Peshawar University Teachers Association (PUTA), Class-3 and Class-4 employees launched a protest campaign last week and set a weeklong deadline for the university administration to accept all their 16 demands, otherwise, they would go on complete strike.

Meanwhile, the employees would observe token strike from 12 to 4 pm from Monday to Friday. They also held a big protest demonstration on Friday last and boycotted duties.

There has been tension between the university administration and representative bodies of the teaching and non-teaching staff of the university. Their rivalry has reached the extent that both sides don’t bother to see each other and instead they don’t waste any opportunity to demean each other.

About the demands of the protesting employees, the vice-chancellor claimed that the university has already approved the 10 per cent increase in salaries and proper homework has been done for the approval of a 20 percent further raise.

He said the provincial government has recently released a Rs 450 million bailout package along with a Rs.50 million performance incentive to the university to combat the financial crises.

About the pending selection board of 2018, he said the matter has been discussed in two meetings by a committee of all deans under the need-based assessment report by the provincial inspection team.

Some 52 class-3, class-4 employees, and sanitation staff have already been promoted, while 500 more promotion cases are in progress by the selection committee, he added.

As per the decision of the syndicate the deduction of 5 per cent from the salaries of the employees will be spent on the maintenance of the employees’ houses, the vice-chancellor pointed out.

Regarding employees’ quota in educational institutions, the vice-chancellor said there is no fee in the constituent schools of the university for class three and class four employees’ children, while 50 per cent fee will be admissible from upper-grade employees.

The conveyance allowance has only been deducted during the winter vacations as per the recommendation of the Departmental Audit Committee (DAC) and Public Accounts Committee (PAC) and the inquiry report by the Provincial Inspection Team (PIT) made in 2020, he said.

The university has recruited about 200 PhD degree holders as visiting teachers for the BS program in various disciplines after a proper advertisement and selection mechanism.

The recruitment has been made for challenging the financial crises at varsity and giving the job and experience opportunity to highly qualified young and energetic people, which can be later inducted after the proper advertisement and selection board, he said.

He said that the university administration has high respect for teachers and students, the few elements creating the gap between administration and teaching staff should be exposed to the teacher and student community.