TNGCTA against Conversion of Govt Colleges

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TNGCTA against Conversion of Govt Colleges

The Government college teachers have decided to launch a series of agitations once again, including boycott of examination-related works and indefinite strike, against the conversion of five government colleges into unitary universities. Earlier, the teachers had dropped their agitation plan on the promise given by the Chief Minister of the state that the government would not act against the welfare of teachers and students.
But now, the Tamil Nadu Government Collegiate Teachers’ Association (TNGCTA) have decided to carry out various kinds of agitation after they were hinted of a report submitted to the state by a high-level committee favouring the conversion, but which allegedly did not get “opinion from stakeholders.”

The committee, headed by former Anna University (AU) Vice-Chancellor Prof V C Kulandaisamy was formed to look into the issue of conversion of colleges into unitary universities, as there was much opposition from teachers and students.

Meanwhile, TNGCTA claimed the committee had submitted a report to the state favouring the conversion. “It is learnt the committee had submitted the report recently, which is in favour of the conversion,” claimed Prof. S.Tamilmani, general secretary of TNGCTA, here on Tuesday.

“But it did not consult the stakeholders directly though we have already asked them to get our views and those of public and other organisations,” he added.

It may be recalled that as Higher Education Minister K.Ponmudy introduced the move to convert, the teachers and students stood up against it, which resulted in various forms of agitations and finally, the state had to stall the move. The teachers’ associations were planning to intensify their agitation.’ Then, but they gave it up on assurance from, the Chief Minister who said the state would not take any decision ‘harmful to the welfare of – the students and teachers.’

Now, the report was expected to be considered after the by-election and the teachers’ association was not happy as they felt it was against their interests.

Hence, the teachers from the Association, who met in Chennai recently to discuss the conversion move, urged the chief minister to intervene and find out an amicable solution to the issue in the interest of teachers and students.

On the other hand, the TNGCTA also passed a resolution at the meeting to seek the support of the Joint Action Council (JAC) of college teachers, which comprises Association of University Teachers (AUT) and Madurai Kamaraj University Teachers’ Association (MUTA) for the protests.

“We are going to seek the support of students organisations, fraternal associations, political parties and the public against the conversion of government colleges into unitary universities,” said Tamilmani.

The TNGCTA will boycott the examination-related work, plunge into fasting, picketing and ultimately into indefinite strike.

Also, they are to distribute handbills and booklets to the public to create awareness on the pitfalls of conversion of government colleges into unitary universities.

Other forms of protests they plan to conduct include a letter campaign, organising human chain protests with teachers, students and public in front of colleges and submitting a memorandum to the high level committee signed by all the members of the Association.

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