Of the 22 aided colleges in the central districts under the jurisdiction of the Regional Joint Director of Collegiate Education, Tiruchi, vacancies have been filled in only seven to eight colleges, according to official sources. Vacancies to sanctioned posts that have been arising due to retirements or deaths have not been filled since 2008.

The Association of University Teachers and Aided College Teachers’ Associations has been constantly reminding the higher education department of the promise the Chief Minister last year regarding the filling up of 3,120 vacancies in government-aided arts and science colleges across the State. The Higher Education Department initially assured college managements that the Directorate of Collegiate Education would permit them to fill the posts after ascertaining their requirements. But the colleges are facing difficulties due to the undue delay in the fulfilment of the promise.

At the level of each of the six Regional Joint Directorates in the State, committees have been formed to determine the teacher requirements. Even if the colleges had sanctioned posts in the past, it may not be possible to ratify them if the student enrolment is not sufficient, according to A.Veeramani, Regional Joint Director of Collegiate Education, Tiruchi.

“In Tiruchi region, 30 to 35 per cent of the vacancies have been filled in seven to eight colleges where the inspections were conducted to assess the requirements,” he said.

Teacher organisations apprehend that the process of recruitment lacks transparency. In one of the long-standing government-aided colleges in Tiruchi city where 25 vacancies are yet to be filled, the committee is yet to ratify the requirement. “The delay in the recruitment process has crippled our functioning,” the college head said.

The AUT has been mooting the idea of putting in place a centralised recruitment mechanism to ensure transparency in appointments in the interests of the student community. The reasoning of the teacher organisations is that the vacancy position was arrived at based on the exact details furnished by colleges at the end of every year and hence the inspection was unwarranted.