The functioning of the University of Calicut ground to a halt when hundreds of employees kept aside their political and organisational differences and went on a non-cooperation strike in protest against the attitude of the university authorities towards their demands.
The employees warned that they would intensify the agitation if Vice-Chancellor M. Abdul Salam did not listen to their demands.
Nearly 2,000 employees belonging to organisations such as the Calicut University Employees’ Union, the Calicut University Staff Organisation, the Solidarity of Calicut University Employees, the Calicut University Employees Centre and the Calicut University Employees Forum took part in the protest. They took out a march to the Administrative Block and staged a sit-in there.
The protesters demanded that they be given their promotions withheld by Dr. Salam. They demanded that their probation be implemented and that the authorities end vendetta against employees by transferring them against regulations.
Although Dr. Salam had promised to consider their demands during a discussion with the employees a few days ago, he did not implement them. “We had no way but to launch such a protest because the Vice-Chancellor did not keep his word,” P. Omer, president of the Employees Union, said.
It was after 27 years that all staff unions and teacher unions on the university campus united against the authorities. What prompted the employees to launch an agitation against the Vice-Chancellor was the latter’s decision to implement the Right to Services rules in an “impractical manner.”
Dr. Salam had ordered that degree certificates be issued within five days after the award of the degree by the Senate. The employees questioned this decision of the Vice-Chancellor saying it was impractical. Following an agitation by the employees, the Vice-Chancellor agreed to raise the time limit.