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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

IIM faculty to approach Centre over pay hike

(F.E.)Ahmedabad: After the IITs, its now the turn of the country’s premier management institutes, the IIMs, to raise the banner of revolt against the pay hikes for their faculty, recommended by the Sixth Pay Commission. Peeved by the short shrift given to them by the government, the faculty members of the elite Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad have decided to approach the Centre within a week with demands for the upgrade of their pay packages.

At a two-hour long faculty committee meeting spearheaded by IIM-A director Sameer Baruah, a decision has been taken to seek redressal from the Centre failing which the IIM-A faculty will be forced to explore other stronger forms of agitation, including resorting to mass casual leave and strikes in line with what the faculty of the IITs are currently adopting. The IIM-A faculty is planning to work in tandem with the other two older IIMs, namely IIM Bangalore and IIM Kolkata, to work out a strategy of making their displeasure felt. “We are not banking on the support of the newer IIMs as they are likely to be browbeaten by the centre into towing its line given their dependence on the centre for their funds,” revealed a senior faculty member on condition of anonymity.

He further disclosed that there was major disgruntlement within the IIM-A against the Sixth Pay Commission notification received last week from the Centre. “Though the exact implications are still being worked out and the salary hike will range anywhere between 15 to 40% depending on parameters like number of years of service etc, one thing is clear. We’ve not been given our due as a premier institute both by the government and the bureaucracy,” the professor said.

According to him, the IIMs have not been given their due as the best management institutes in the country. “While earlier as per the old scale, an assistant professor of an IIT or IIM was paid two to three levels above the UGC grade, the Sixth Pay Commission has downgraded this difference. What is the rationale for doing this given the fact that we are institutes of excellence,” he asked.

Furthermore, the faculty members also felt that if the country really needed world-class institutes, the salaries should be commensurate with the that. For instance, they demanded parity of salaries with the salaries being paid to the Secretaries to the Centre and the top executives of navratnas and public sector...
In view of the prevailing disparities, the IIM-A faculty has demanded a pay hike of at least Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000 per month. “Given the fact that the IIMs are facing a faculty shortage anywhere between 20 to 50 per cent, urgent steps need to be taken to retain and attract the best faculty to these institutions,” the IIM-A source said.

Over the past five years, the IIMs have been losing faculty to private sector educational institutes like the ISB which pay salaries four times higher. An assistant professor of an IIM has a pay packet of Rs 5-7 lakh compared to Rs 20-25 lakh which his counterpart at ISB earns. The situation is expected to turn grimmer with the entry of foreign institutes which too will attract faculty with bigger and better pay packages....

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