The copy of the letter with Indian Express and the teacher’s identity is withheld.
“Sir, you do not know me. You can never know me or my name or the names of lakhs of us who are serving in your universities as ‘adhocs’. I was 25 years old when I rejected lucrative prospects in the new corporatising India,” he wrote.
“I thought it was happening only to me and my friends. Now, two decades have passed and it’s still there,” he said.
“They think about us only in the months of April-June because they need to be filled by real people for the “task” of teaching. We get subjected to a humiliating repetitive ritual of filling the forms to convey our availability to become adhocs. The muggy month of July becomes preeminently disgracing, every year, when we face an interview and answer the golden question: ‘What new will you do this year?,” he wrote.
“The university gives our minimum-wage salaries of 4-5 months together, saving a lot of the monthly work to be put in by clerks. It is our problem to cope with our ad hocness with self-disgust. The university is serious about the ‘task’ of teaching, so it doesn’t give us medical leave or paid leave to get married or have kids. Nor are we supposed to attend seminars the UGC loves so much,” the teacher added.
“Our inability to pay a decent amount on time is known to the landlords, but you remain blissfully ignorant. In the lives of lakhs of my ad hoc friends, the regular incumbent has not come in the last 15 years because no such claimant exists. You know for sure, as the visitor of all Central universities, that permanent appointments have not been made for a long time,” he wrote.
He says, “I often hear you say that the universities need to become globally competitive. The absence of the mention of teachers in this kind of chatter has dissuaded my brightest students from teaching as a career option. When they saw me sitting in the corridors, waiting to face yet another humiliating interview, their ideas about the life of a good teacher crashed.”
He ends on a sad note and says,”To come out together is useless because we are adhocs. To come out alone is suicidal. After all, I am an adhoc and four months end too soon.”