The Delhi High Court has directed the state to release funds for four Delhi University colleges. Several months have passed by and the staff of many varsity colleges have not been paid. Therefore, the court has asked the colleges to pay their teaching and non-teaching staff of Delhi University latest by November 9. The state has been asked to release funds for Aditi Mahavidyalaya Women’s College, Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies, Bhagini Nivedita College, and Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar College for the first two quarters of the financial year commencing April 2020.
A plea was filed by a few varsity teachers which claimed that they have not been paid since 4-5 months. “All of them (colleges) are blaming you squarely and fairly for retaining the money. Do you think we will let anybody dip into the students’ welfare fund to pay salaries of the lecturers,” said the division bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramonium Prasad.
The Delhi government said in the court that the state releases funds for colleges on a “revenue deficit basis”. A special audit was being conducted for three colleges since June, out of which two are completed and others shall be done till Thursday. Moreover, the government also mentioned that colleges have funds in their accounts. However, the court asked the state why this issue was not realised before the pandemic. Furthermore, the court said that it sees no reason why the state should not be called upon to release funds.
“Your conduct does speak louder than your words,” observed the court, as it asked the state whether the “revenue deficit basis” pattern was being followed till last year too. The court also said audits can “continue till the cows come home” but the salaries will have to be paid. “What special audit? What is special about the year 2020? That there is a pandemic and you are short of funds?”, asked Delhi High Court.
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