PU class students twiddle their thumbs

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Bangalore, 14 December 2011: The ongoing indefinite strike by pre-university lecturers has left students at government and aided colleges worried over the likelihood of missing out on classrooom teaching over most part of the remaining academic year.


The students find themselves sandwiched between the State government and the protesting teachers. The government has told the teachers that their demands will be met only after next March when a committee formed to look into pay disparity submits its report. The protesters, however, are not convinced and want the government to take a decision immediately.

The students have already missed about 20 classes since teachers began boycotting the classes on December 8. The situation will only worsen if the strike continues. Most students at government and aided colleges did not turn up on Tuesday, but those who did, had an uneventful day.

Kishore U, a II PU Science student at Seshadripuram PU College, said he was worried about missing the laboratory classes. “The lab classes have been postponed to next week.

We can afford to miss theory classes as about 75 per cent of the syllabus has been completed. But we cannot take any chance with the lab classes,” Kishore said.

The students did attend the classes on Monday, chatting with friends on topics that ranged from mundane activities to the next board examination. Kishore said the management had asked them to be in the college for at least two hours.

But, missing the labs is not the only worry. The students attend classes regularly only up to December. Thereafter, the attendance drops as preparatory examinations for theory as well as practical subjects (mainly for science stream) are scheduled for January.

In February, a “study holiday” is declared as main practical examinations will be held in this month whereas the theory examinations are scheduled for March. However, attendance is another cause for concern, Kishore added.

Shwetha Bai R, a II PU student at Government PU College for Girls, Basavangudi, said that the strike, if continued, will trouble her more. “Right now, I’m okay with the strike as the teachers have promised to teach us on Sundays and take special classes to complete the syllabus. But there will be problems if the strike continues,” she said.

According to Shwetha, the strike may give a “bad impression about the teachers but it was inevitable as they are not paid adequately. The government should solve the teachers’ problems at once.”

Shwetha and her friends are attending the college only to “meet friends and study the subjects themselves.” She said that half of the syllabus needed to be completed in the next two months. The strike, however, had no impact on unaided colleges. Mount Carmel PU College, Palace Road, and MES PU College, Malleswaram, functioned as usual.

Meanwhile, the Karnataka State Pre-University College Lecturers’ Association (KSPUCLA) said it would stage a rally at Freedom Park here on Wednesday to pressure the government. The KSPUCLA received the support of six Bharatiya Janata Party MLCs elected from teachers’ constituencies. Also, three MLCs from Opposition parties have backed the protesters.

“We want the government to announce an academic grade pay for the time being before the Sixth Pay Commission submits its report,” Shakeel Ahmad, General Secretary, KSPUCLA, told Deccan Herald.



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