AICTE Norms & Standards for Staff Pattern, Pay scales & Service Conditions of Technical Staff in Engineering Institutes
The All India Council of Technical Education has played a very important role, in maintaining uniformity of standards in the technical education system in the country. Recent trends however indicate that many important recommendations of the Council having a direct bearing on the improvement of quality of technical education have either been, neglected or overlooked. Quality of technical education is very important to the maintenance of standards.
If, All India Council of Technical Education is to be effective in ensuring balanced development of technical education in terms of quantity and quality, the Council should use statutory powers rigidly given in AICTE Act 1987.
With the certain changes in national educational policies to enhance the higher technical education, several private non-government un-aided engineering institutes have been established in the country, on self-financing basis in last decades.
In the present education system, only teaching faculty (“teachers” as per existing AICTE/UGC definition) is at the centre of concentration of all. They have been given added significance. But, the qualified ‘academic’ Technical Staff working as Lab. Assistants, Lab. Technicians, Technical Assistants, Programmers, Computer operators, Instructors, demonstrators who train the students in a laboratory have negligible importance in the vision of the colleges, Universities, DTE, UGC & also AICTE/MHRD, and treated as Non-Teaching at par with administrative & other supporting staff in the campus and overlooked all the way.
AICTE has issued the notification on revised pay scales and service conditions of the Teachers, Librarians and Physical Education Personnel of degree level private self-financing Technical institutions. (F.No.1-65/CD/NEC/98-99, dated MAY 3, 2000). Again a draft notification & gazette have been published by the AICTE prescribing the Sixth Pay Scales and Service Conditions of the teachers. (F.No.37-3/Legal/2010, dated 5 March, 2010)
The Pay Scales and Service Conditions, for different categories of Technical Staff are not prescribed by AICTE, even after two-three decades of introduction of these non-government & un-aided engineering colleges in the country.
In 1990, AICTE has framed short guidelines revealing Technical Staff Pattern along with job responsibilities and required minimum qualifications in the booklet of “AICTE Norms and Standards for degree level Technical Institutes”. These are not amended in subsequent publications of AICTE norms and standards.. These norms are mostly unnoticed in the private & self-financing, non government Engineering institutes in last decades due to lack of scrutiny process by the apex bodies.
Huge number of technical staff is imparting instructions in laboratories of these institutes. They are not being appointed as per the AICTE staff pattern and not paid proper salaries.
AICTE Act 1987 offers same importance to the teachers and technical & supporting staff. At the same time, no particular clauses are spelled out for teachers in it. However, AICTE powers and functions are widely operational for the development of the technical education bearing in mind the welfare of the students and only teaching faculty. The curtain raiser technical staff has been entirely overlooked in the system even though it plays a significant role in technical education.
Clauses relating to the technical and supporting staff are specified in Section 10, Chapter III of AICTE Act 1987. It reveals
- It shall be the duty of the Council to take all such steps as it may think fit for ensuring coordinated and integrated development of technical education and maintenance of standards and for the purpose of performing its functions under this Act, the Council may
(n) take all necessary steps to prevent commercialization of technical education;
(i) lay down norms and standards for courses, curricula, physical and instructional facilities, staff pattern, staff qualifications, quality instructions, assessment and examinations;
(r) take steps to strengthen the existing organisations, and to set up new organisation, and to set up new organisations to ensure effective discharge of the Council’s responsibilities and to create positions of professional, technical and supporting staff based on requirements.
In “Standard Code Rules (SCR) 1984”, Staff Structure, Pay Scales, Promotion Policies and other Service Conditions etc. are defined for Non-Teaching employees of Non-agricultural Universities & affiliated Arts, Science, Commerce & other colleges. Mainly, regulations of administrative and other Staff are specified in it.
However, the Staff Structure with required minimum qualifications and pay scales for different categories of Technical Staff of Non-Government degree level Engineering Colleges are not spelled out by most of the universities in their Standard Code Rules, even though they are being treated as Non-Teaching. Moreover, AICTE has not prescribed uniform pay scales and service conditions for Technical Staff.
Let us hope, at least now after decades, MHRD or AICTE will take steps to prescribe norms and standards for Pay Scales and Service Conditions with uniform Staff Pattern and Career Advance Scheme for different categories of Technical Staff at par with the teachers. And also persistent scrutiny will be operational for implementation of these Norms & Standards uniformly all over the country.