The Bangladesh University Teacher's Forum has requested the Ministry of Education and the University Grants Commission (UGC) to find a fair solution to the unpaid salaries of teachers, officials and staff of private universities as the coronavirus shutdown continues across the country.
It has requested the ministry and the UGC to discuss the issue with the board of trustees of the concerned private universities to solve the problem as soon as possible, a press release said.
The press release also said, "We are requesting the board of trustees of the universities to look into the matter of non-payment of salaries as a humane instead of a commercial issue during the coronavirus pandemic."
The government closed all educational institutions in the country from March 17 to curb the spread of coronavirus. There were claims that some private universities did not pay salaries, or paid only partial salaries to teachers and staff due to the shutdown. The matter was published in different electronic and print media including social networking platforms.
Private universities said that they are facing financial constraints because they have not been able to collect student fees or enrol new students. But the UGC says that according to the annual financial statements of the universities, they are quite capable of paying salaries to teachers, officials and staff for at least the next one year.
According to Article 9 under Section 6 of the Private University Act, all universities should have a reserved fund for development, and to cover the expenses of the universities in such an emergency period (Articles 3,4 under Section 46). We are condemning as exception to the law occurred in the matter. We are demanding to take action according to the state law if it not resolved within the fastest time.