Saturday, October 3, 2009

Pay scales

In the issue of pay scales and recruitment of assistant professors on contract, I had written earlier,

"The Institutes need not "fight" with MHRD on the issue of assistant professor on contract, the 10% cap on this cadre, the 40% cap on the promotion of professors etc. All they need to do is to tell MHRD to change the wording to "It is suggested that assistant professors that are recruited have three years experience.." "

Subsequently, yesterday, the minister has apparently "agreed" to this. Well, what did the meeting finally do? Ashok Jhunjhunwala, the eminent professor from IIT-M, puts it correctly, "The teachers were looking for an escape route to wriggle out of this situation, which Sibal provided" However, I had no doubt in my mind earlier that the selection committee will ultimately decide who will be placed in which scale when recruited. As the minister said, "If in a particular discipline faculty is not available as per the existing norms, the IITs can relax the norms to absorb any person." Currently, in IISc, we recruit an assistant professor in chemistry only with three years of postdoc experience while we recruit an assistant professor in electrical engineering with one year of postdoc experience. Therefore, both of them will be placed at 30,000 and moved to PB-4 after 4 years. We might even place a senior professor (currently at the 22,400- scale) in the HAG scale.

Let me repeat, IISc/IIT always had the flexibility to admit students and recruit, promote faculty based on what an admission or a selection or promotion committee or BoG/council decides. This is the reason why we have 15 year olds doing Ph.Ds, a 27-year old recruited as an associate professor or a 38 year old being promoted to professor in IISc. In IIT-M, one of my colleagues was promoted to professor directly from assistant professor.

For those who have referred me to my colleague's, Abi, post calling the above as a major victory for IITs, I have only thing to say to Abi, "The emoticon for sarcasm is :d or :-J" Please put the emoticon in your posts (this one and the earlier post) because no one (except me!) is able to figure out that you are being sarcastic !


Anonymous said...


ansumali said...

Aha! So I am not the only one who think that IIT faculty association was looking for a escape route and things remains as bad as they were on 1st October.

Anonymous said...

Prof. Giri, thanks for bringing out the sarcasm in Prof. Abi's post. However, there may be some sense in calling this a "major victory."

It's true that the IITs always had the flexibility in terms of recruitment and promotions. However, the new notification took away that flexibility. It has now been restored, and that, I believe, is the victory that Prof. Abi was talking about? Not that something new was achieved, but that at least the old system was put back in place. Things could have been worse without this "major victory."

-- NP

iitmsriram said...

Let me reproduce what I have posted elsewhere.

Thanks to NP, for acknowledging my "inputs"; I will continue to offer inputs as long as I believe they have a constructive purpose. People may feel that the agitations and the faculty federations have accomplished nothing. But I believe Thenmozhi correctly states that we were happy with the discussions. It is not only the faculty associations that needed an escape route, the ministry too! I believe what has been worked out is a reasonable settlement; we have got some of the things we wanted but not some others. There may not be any new notifications, but just wait and see how the notifications are implemented.


ps: if you caught the "we were happy" phrase, yes, I was there.

Giri@iisc said...

I agree with iitmsriram that it was a reasonable settlement. I do not think the notification took away the flexibility but I am glad that the minister explicitly stated so.

Anonymous said...

You didn't appear to be smiling
in the shot recycled all day on TV.
Let's see how the anomalies between
the UGC Assoc. Prof. entry scale
and Assistant Prof. scale in IIX can get rectified if there is no notification on that..probably by reducing or eliminating the contract period for selected candidates...because that is a huge
jump in salary.

iitmsriram said...

Many people have been walking up to me (or my wife!) and stating that I did not look happy - how come? The footage was taken BEFORE the discussions with the minister. I was sick of the jostling by the members of the delegation who were trying to get seats next to the minister so they could appear on TV etc. I was happy with the discussions that took place subsequently.