Public University Teachers to Begin Strike from Tuesday

Public University Teachers to Begin Strike from Tuesday

Public university teachers across Bangladesh will start a four-day strike on Tuesday, June 25, demanding the cancellation of the “Pratyay Scheme” under the universal pension system and addressing two other key demands. The strike, called by the Federation of Bangladesh University Teachers’ Association, will last until Thursday, June 27, with a half-day work stoppage each day. This will be followed by a full-day strike on June 30.

Reasons for the Strike

The teachers are protesting against the newly introduced “Pratyay Scheme,” which they believe will create disparities among university faculty members. Despite previous statements, press conferences, and human chains over the past two months, the government has not responded positively to their demands, leading to this escalation.

Federation’s Position

Dr. Md. Nizamul Haque Bhuiyan, the General Secretary of the Federation, confirmed that no positive response has been received from the government regarding their demands. Therefore, the previously announced strike will proceed as planned. He mentioned that while classes will be suspended during the strike, ongoing examinations will not be affected.

Teachers’ Demands

  1. Cancellation of the “Pratyay Scheme”: The teachers demand the withdrawal of the notification related to the “Pratyay Scheme” and the reinstatement of the previous pension scheme.
  2. Inclusion in Super Grade: They seek the inclusion of university teachers in the super grade category.
  3. Separate Pay Scale: Implementation of a distinct pay scale for university teachers.

Previous Actions

On June 4, teachers observed a half-day strike from 8:30 AM to 1:30 PM in all public universities. Following this, Federation leaders issued an ultimatum to the government during a press conference at Dhaka University, setting a deadline of June 24 to meet their demands.

Upcoming Strike Schedule

  • June 25, 26, 27: Teachers will observe a half-day strike.
  • June 28, 29: Weekend break (Friday and Saturday).
  • June 30: Full-day strike from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM.

If their demands remain unmet after June 30, the Federation has warned of an indefinite strike starting from July 1.

Government’s Position

The “Pratyay Scheme” notification and related announcements from the Ministry of Finance state that employees joining autonomous, semi-autonomous, state-owned, statutory, or similar organizations from July 1 onwards will be compulsorily included in the universal pension system under the “Pratyay Scheme.” This includes universities, which are considered autonomous institutions. Additionally, from 2025, government officials will also be included in this pension system.

Dr. Md. Nizamul Haque Bhuiyan expressed that the decision to implement the scheme without consulting the teachers has been rejected by the teaching community. Consequently, the three-day half-day strike will commence from Tuesday, June 25, as part of their protest actions.

This ongoing dispute highlights significant tensions between university faculty members and the government regarding pension reforms and working conditions in the public university sector.

JR Nayan

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