IIM-Calcutta faculty face new code of conduct: no criticism, no protests, no petitions

NO criticising the institute or the federal government, no becoming a member of protest demonstrations that harm “public order” or “decency,” curbs on going to the court docket or the press, no politics, no signing joint petitions for redressal — these are among the many key provisions of a brand new code of conduct for college on the Indian Institute of Administration, Calcutta.

The draft code, circulated late February by former director Anju Seth on behalf of the Board, has met sturdy resistance from the college. In a response signed by over 60 lecturers, they’ve argued that the code, borrowing closely from the Central Civil Providers (Conduct) Guidelines, goes in opposition to the understanding of a tutorial establishment that’s anticipated to advertise important considering and tutorial freedom.

It additionally infringes on their Constitutionally protected rights and goes in opposition to the thought of contemplating tutorial establishments totally different from authorities departments.

Except for prohibiting criticism of the federal government and the institute and its insurance policies, the code expects lecturers to hunt prior approval of “the competent authority” to pursue any tutorial pursuits exterior the institute.

It forbids them from being “a signatory to any joint illustration addressed to the authorities for redress of any grievance” and forwarding their plea for grievance redressal to a better authority “until the decrease authority has rejected the declare or refused aid, or the disposal of the matter is delayed by greater than three months.”

“No worker shall, besides with the earlier sanction of the competent authority, have recourse to any Courtroom of Legislation or to the Press for the vindication of any official act which has been the subject material of opposed criticism or an assault of defamatory character,” the draft states.

Then there may be the expectation of sustaining political neutrality and never participating in politics or being related to any get together or group that participates in political exercise.

Participation in demonstrations that may be thought of “prejudicial to the pursuits of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the safety of the State, pleasant relations with international States, public order, decency or morality or which entails contempt of court docket, defamation or incitement to any offence” is a no-go space.

Satirically, this code comes shortly after the college approached the federal government straight in opposition to their Director and the Board, which ultimately led to the previous’s resignation. Board Chairman Shri Krishna Kulkarni didn’t reply to an e-mail.

“By reposing its immense religion within the efficacy of Central Civil Service (Conduct) Guidelines because the foundational governing coverage for a tutorial establishment, the doc seems to have turned its again on the juridical and politico-administrative knowledge embedded within the extant Indian institutional framework that has at all times stood for the autonomy of educational establishments,” the suggestions shared with the sub-committee of the Board of Governors reads.

Academics have cited the instance of the MIT college lately writing an open letter to US Congress for a sturdy coronavirus stimulus package deal serving to the economically susceptible to endorse their level.

On proscribing criticism of the federal government and the institute, the college have mentioned this can be a “departure” from insurance policies at finest institutes worldwide that stress that “stakeholders in an organisation have the precise to talk out in opposition to any flawed insurance policies, as a result of in any other case the organisation won’t ever eliminate flawed insurance policies.”

The lecturers have referred to court docket judgments to argue that CCS Guidelines mustn’t apply to tutorial establishments since lecturers should not authorities servants. They cite a 2013 order of the Supreme Courtroom that dominated staff of schools affiliated to state-recognised universities can’t be labelled as authorities servants, and the principles for state staff mustn’t govern them.

The service guidelines of IIM-Bangalore carry the supply on criticism of the institute, authorities and their insurance policies. Nonetheless, the final conduct guidelines of IIM-Ahmedabad make no point out of the identical however lecturers at IIM-Ahmedabad are anticipated to keep up “political neutrality.”

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