Tuesday, June 22, 2010
RAISING OF RETIREMENT AGE.
Education ministers of several states today expressed their reservations against raising the retirement age of college and university teachers to 65 and demanded the superannuation issue be delinked from the composite package offered by the Centre to the states.
The Sixth Pay Revision for university and college teachers says the retirement age should be raised from 60 to 65.
The human resources development (HRD) ministry had asked state governments to implement the revised pay package and said it would provide 80% of the additional cost for a specific period to be borne by them for implementing the package.
The ministers, however, said since education is on the concurrent list, they should not be forced to implement the decision to raise the superannuation age as part of the package.
"We should have a system to reclaim the best teachers but superannuation issue should be left to the state as it is on the concurrent list," said Kerala education minister MA Baby, a view seconded by Uttar Pradesh education minister Rakesh Dhar Tripathi.
Baby said a consensus has to be built up before arriving at such a decision.
Raising her objection, Haryana education minister Geeta Bhukkal said "similar demands would be raised by employees of other sectors if such a decision is implemented."
When Rajasthan education minister raised fears about the fate of the younger generation should such a move is implemented, HRD minister Kapil Sibal objected to it saying "we would need 32,000 colleges by 2020. Therefore, there should not be any apprehension about its impact on the younger generation."
Sibal said raising the retirement age was taken to popularise the teaching profession. "I have taken your concerns (the ministers) into account and would convey them to the government," he said.
Madhya Pradesh is the only state which has raised the retirement age to 65.
West Bengal Education Sudarshan Roychaudhury said the superannuation issue should not be linked with the 80% reimbursement provided by the Centre to the states.