In Deccan College, few teachers on reserved posts for 33 years
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One of the oldest institutions in the country, the Deccan College has for long faced shortage of teachers. But the situation is particularly dismal when it comes to posts for teaching faculty in backward and scheduled categories with most of these seats remaining vacant for the last 33 years. Director V P Bhatta says even the number of reserved category students is negligible in the 192-year-old college.
"In the Sanskrit department, two posts for editor (professor), a post for assistant editor (associate professor), and two posts for sub-editor in the Lexicography department have been lying vacant in the reserved category for the last 33 years," says Bhatta. Same is the situation with other departments. "Out of 10 posts in Linguistics and Archeology departments, four reserved seats each have been lying vacant again for the last 33 years," he adds.
One of the major problems for these seats remaining vacant, says Bhatta, is the dearth of applicants. "In the last three years, we have placed four advertisements inviting applications from teachers in reserved categories. Not even one application came. Now we have stopped advertising," says the director. "Another problem is the rule that the expert in a particular field should also be a domicile of Maharashtra to be eligible for these seats. For example, an expert in Dravidian languages will most probably be a south Indian and not Maharashtrian. Further, a post of Reader in Sindhi language is reserved for an OBC candidate. Someone told me that there are no OBCs in Sindhi who have a Maharashtra domicile. I think these two posts will remain vacant forever," adds Bhatta.
As per government rules, open category candidates cannot be considered for reserved seats even if they are lying vacant. "We agree with this rule in principle. But due to this students and various projects like the Encyclopaedic Dictionary of Sanskrit are suffering badly. We have written to the government so many times to allow us to recruit open candidates, but to no avail," says Bhatta.
The situation is worse in case of reserved category students. Sanskrit and Linguistics are non-commercial branches and hence admissions are already very low. Out of the total allowed intake of 40 students in each department in post-graduate level, Sanskrit and Linguistics departments have four and 10 students, respectively. "In Sanskrit, eight students had applied but four dropped out later. So is the case with Linguistics where 15 applied and five dropped out. There was not even a single application from reserved category students," says Bhatta.
The Archaeology department is, however, doing a little better. "There are 31 students in MA with 21 from open category and 10 belonging to various reserved categories. But in MA final year, there are 29 candidates of which only two are from reserved category," says Bhatta. "Archeology is doing better since it is more commercial than the other two departments. Most of the Linguistics and Sanskrit students are the ones who have enrolled because of their love for the subject and not for jobs," he adds.
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