“The University authorities claim the matter is sub-judice, but many have received their pensions”

Among the teachers participating in the day-long dharna organised by the Delhi University Teachers' Association in front of the Vice-Chancellor's office this past Thursday were some old men with walking sticks who called themselves the “retired teachers association” and demanded immediate release of their pension, which they claimed was being withheld by the university administration.

Notification in 1987

“The university had issued a notification in 1987 giving us the option of transferring from the Contributory Provident Fund to the General Provident Fund and some 450 teachers, including myself, took the option. After that around 200 teachers have retired and received their pensions…but when I retired in 2011, the university refused to release my pension,” said Prof. D. S. Agarwal, who retired in March 2011 after completing 41 years of service in Delhi University.

Prof. Agarwal has approached every body possible that he thinks can remotely help his case. “There are six teachers and one section officer who are not getting their pensions. I have spoken to almost every university official, have approached the DUTA and met the finance officer several times,” he said.

He has also managed to contact several media houses, waylay politicians at events and has tried to push his cause forward with the Vice-Chancellor and other officials at university functions. “They all say they sympathise with me, but they cannot do anything as the matter is sub-judice but this is not so. I have tried to tell them several times.”

The finance officer said: “We are not trying to harass him or anything. There are several people like him. The matter is in the High Court and is sub-judice, therefore, we cannot comment on the matter.”

Meanwhile, Prof. Agarwal, who said that he is finding it difficult to sustain his livelihood, is on the verge of giving up. “I am fed up now, I just want all this to be over so that I can live in peace.”

His sentiments are somewhat echoed by retired Bhagat Singh College principal and member of the retired teachers' association, Dr. B.C. Saigal. “This whole issue started in January, they say the matter is sub-judice but I have sent applications of my teachers, under the same scheme, who retired when I was still in office and they have all received their pensions,” he said.