New Delhi: The teachers' body of Delhi University has reacted sharply to the varsity administration's directions for ensuring compulsory attendance on Oct. 2 for the launch of the government's Swach Bharat Abhiyan.
"DU's manner of issuing a whimsical diktat demanding an unscheduled and superficial presence of teachers in their respective colleges on Gandhi Jayanti will reduce any serious effort to implement cleanliness to mere tokenism," Delhi University Teachers' Association (DUTA) President Nandita Narain said in a statement here.
Stating that DU teachers are unhappy over the sudden cancellation of a public holiday, Narain said, "The campaign initiated by the Prime Minister requires the varsity's contribution for a cleaner environment and not the superficial presence of its staff."
The DU administration, while issuing orders for compulsory attendance, enclosed a copy of a Human Resource Development ministry memorandum whose directions, the teachers claimed, are not ipso facto applicable to the varsity's employees.
"The letter from UGC on the issue has appealed to the universities to make the campaign a success, not to make it mandatory to be present at the institution," Narain said.
In keeping with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for the Swachh Bharat campaign, DU has constituted a 20-member committee which would be responsible for spreading awareness among the students about cleanliness, hygiene and safety.
'Swachata Abhiyan', or the DU's cleanliness drive as part of the Swachh Bharat Mission, will be launched by the Vice Chancellor tomorrow from the varsity's Gandhi Bhawan.
"This is a good initiative. It will not be merely a ceremonial gesture, but will continue for five years till 2019, culminating for the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi," said Malay Neerav, DU's Media Coordinator and Joint Dean of Students' welfare.