This assistant professor from Bihar has gained everyone’s attention as he returned his 33 months’ salary. Even though the government is yet to acknowledge his protest or accept his logic, he has returned his two years and nine months’ worth of salary, or Rs 23.8 lakh.
According to reports, an assistant professor of Nitisheswar College, in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur, has returned nearly Rs 24 lakh, his total earnings since joining the job in September 2019, as no student turned up for a single class in these 33 months.
33-year-old Lalan Kumar gave a cheque of Rs 23,82,228 to the registrar of BR Ambedkar Bihar University (BRABU) on Tuesday. The college is under the aegis of BRABU, a state university. His “conscience did not allow” him to pocket the salary without teaching.
“My conscience does not allow me to take a salary without teaching. Even during online classes (during the pandemic), there were only a handful of students present for Hindi classes. If I take a salary without teaching for five years, it would be academic death for me,” Kumar told the media on Wednesday.
Lallan Kumar has a Ph.D. and has studied at Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University.
“When I’d joined, I was not posted to a college where I could teach postgraduate classes. Those with lower ranks (in the selection process) got those postings. Here, the students never show up.” He alleged that his name was “cut” from the transfer list several times. I will start a sit-in protest if my demand isn’t met,” he said.
Here’s what we said:
No Students To Teach
The college’s principal, Manoj Kumar, questioned Kumar’s motive in returning his salary. He said, “it is not just absenteeism [of students] but a pressure tactic to get a transfer to postgraduate department. For two years, classes were disrupted due to the coronavirus pandemic,” he said, arguing that Lallan Kumar “should’ve told me directly if he wanted a transfer,” he said.
Meanwhile, BRABU registrar R K Thakur lauded the move. “What Lalan Kumar did is quite unusual and merits our immediate attention. We are discussing the matter with the vice-chancellor and would soon ask the Nitisheshwar College principal to explain absenteeism. Professor Lallan Kumar is upset regarding his transfer demand. He has given us a cheque but we have not accepted it,” Thakur said.
Nitisheshwar College has 3,000 students, of which 1,100 undergraduate students have to study Hindi. Kumar is the only regular Hindi Professor in the college, aside from a guest teacher for the subject.