Andhra Pradesh    Reg.No:2368/88
Excellence | Truth | Freedom
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Today we are celebrating ACTA's Diamond Jubilee remembering the glorious struggles waged, sacrifices made and achievements wrested and to rededicate ourselves to the cause of college teachers in general and aided college teachers in particular. Over 60 years had passed, it is but necessary to recall the past to know why and how ACTA was formed and the role that certain individuals had played then, foreseeing the dreams they dreamt and the inspirations that enthused, prompted their successors to act and fight for a better day, the causes there to had to be looked into and take steps to contain and reverse the process of decay to save education and promote the interests of the poor people especially the underprivileged.


It was in 1938 that a few individuals committed to education whom the national sentiment was gripping used to meet in the evening hours, all eminent teachers of the day who converse on the national problems and taking a look in to the service conditions especially their poor pay as the managements had inadequate funds, insecurity etc. Notable among them were late Sri D.S. ubrahmanyam, Lecturer in Physics, Late, Sri Telikicharla Venkataratnam, Lecturer in Telikicharla Venkataratnam, Lecturer in Telugu, both from A.C. College, Guntur and Sri A. Ranganayakulu, Lecturer in Maths, Hindu College, Guntur. They decided to organize all College Teachers in the area and form an association to intiate steps to bring to the notice, the problems confronting them to the authorities concerned. An Association was formed and named as "ACTA" (Affiliated College Teachers' Association) and registered in 1942. Thus ACTA came into being. ACTA (A) representing the college teachers in Andhra and S.V. University areas was in existence since 1942. ACTA (OU) in 1965 failed and ACTA (OU) reborn as TACTA in 1967. Govt. college teachers though they were a part of ACTA (A) till 1967 decided to form a separate Association as their service conditions were different from those of private colleges though parity was enforced in other matters. Lecturers of the early years of ACTA's life were academicians who were very few in number and mostly highbrowed shyed to mix with common man and stayed away from the public, looked at the skies, never on the ground. The leaders of erstwhile ACTA abhored agitations even a mild, but contended themselves with submission of representations to the insignificant officers. They used to hold annual conferences and invite education 26 minister of the day who would deliver homily never on the problems such as pay, promotions, security etc. to the discount of the suffering teachers and yet receive loud applause, grinning a week smile. This annual ritual continued till 1963.


The number of Colleges started increasing, young teachers started swelling carrying with them the messages of freedom, the right to demand conditions for better life. The impact of independence, the clash of new ideas and the growing influence of socialism had crafted a new ambience in the colleges and the college teachers rising new hopes, desires, ambitions and urges which spurred them on to act. It was at this town, Bhimavaram than the call for militant action, united struggles and agitations was sounded. The young lecturers responded to the call and started building up united movement in the state in a small way. At this juncture an important leader emerged who steered the college teachers' movement to greater heights and emancipated the aided college teachers from the bondage, insecurity of service, ruthless dismissals of lecturers by the managements and created a place of pride to the aided college teacher in the society. He is none other than Sri M.J. Manikya Rao, the living legend, a symbol of sacrifice and dedication, octogenarian, considered to be the father of the college teachers' movement in Andhra Pradesh and regarded by one and all in high esteem. He organized the college teachers on a massive scale, made relentless efforts and brought the Government to the negotiating table and fought like a warrior and secured so many benefits like UGC pay scales, HRA, 100% grant-in-aid to the collages, pension and gratuity to the aided lecturers on par with the Government College Teachers, direct ayment of salaries through banks etc besides ensuring the better working conditions and job security. He is a towering personality, entered the policy making bodies twice, authored several memorandums and Government Orders and a man of wisdom. At the age of 80, though his physical body doesn't permit him to move, his spirit in guiding the teachers has not declined. Under the leadership of Sri M.J. Manikya Rao garu important leaders in ACTA (A) and ACTA (Osmania) and the managements association assembles at Hyderabad and called on Late N. Sanjiva Reddy and Late A.C. Subba Reddy and urged them to see that Grant-in-Aid was revised to ensure regular payment of salaries to the staff of aided colleges by providing adequate grants. A committee was constituted under the Chairmanship of late D.S. Reddy, the then Vice Chancellor of Osmania University assisted by eminent educationists of the day. The committee submitted its report in G.O. 948, dt. 01.04.1964 dealing with all 27 problems touching up on all aspects of the issues raised by ACTA (A) ACTA (Osmania) and the managements associations making momentousrecommendations, which ushered in qualitative changes which were radical in nature, in content and substance. Total parity between Govt. and Aided College Teachers in all matters was the quintessence of D.S. Reddy Committee recommendations. In 1967 the UGC pay scales were introduced and were extended to both Govt. and aided college teachers through G.O.Ms. No 1182 Edn. (C) dated 26-05-1967. Though the college teachers were happy with the risen in pay they were disturbed at the problems that arose in the course of implementation. At this stage the joint action committee was formed and waged agitations which compelled the Govt. to concede the demands. Thus a new era had set in with the issue of D.S. Reddy Committee recommendations. The days when management had to look for their additional funds were over. As is worth with the bureaucrats, they just glossed over other recommendations. The committee recommended that no college should be eligible for grant-inaid unless the prior permission of the Government has been obtained for its establishment. Major recommendations of the Dr. D.S.Reddy Committee were given the go-by and were not implemented for over 10 years stealthily provoking the aided college teachers to militant action. Thus began agitations - firstly as Dharnas as in C.S.R. Sarma College, Ongole in 1964, P.B.N. College, Nidubrolu as in 1972, Hunger Strikes in 1972 as in D.A.R. College, Nuziveedu, Strike as in C.R. College, Chilakaluripet in 1972 which were all local to start with, but rolled into a mass movement involving all the lecturers in Andhra and S.V. Universities went on struck work and boycotted the University Examinations and paralysed the Andhra and S.V. University for 38 days which compelled the then Government headed by late Sri H.C. Sarin, the Chief Advisor to Government to come to terms with ACTA (A) conceding on major demands i.e., admission to grant-in-aid over which the bureaucrats dragged on for over 10 years and referring the other demands to late Sri J. Vengala Rao, who succeed late H.C. Sarin, who issued orders admitting 12 unaided colleges (9+3) to grant-in-aid on 27-04-1973 laying down a policy as envisaged in D.S. Reddy Committee recommendations. That was a break through in ACTA's efforts to secure parity with Govt. Colleges in all matters. It was an historical achievement over which Aided College Teachers took pride and deep sense of satisfaction. Servility which always kept the Aided College teachers on tenterhooks had to become a fear of yesteryears. Security of service was assured statutorily, service of the ousted lecturers of P.B.N. College, Nidubrolu were restored and arrears 28 paid. Pension, HRA and other fringe benefits were sanctioned on par with Govt. College Teachers. Thebureaucrats were sore with the achievements of ACTA; mainly with parity between aided and Govt. College Teachers. They were on the look out for pitfalls to wipe out the parity between Aided and Govt. College teachers and render the D.S.Reddy Committee recommendations obsolete. An opportunity had come up alluring the muddle headed bureaucrats whose services suit the political money grabbers to emancipate the aided system and wipe out the aided system dangling millions of dollars amassed by the international robbers tempting them the share the loot, all in the name of the poor, to whose service they pretending to have been committed to. In 1974 UGC recommended uniform scales of pay to all college teachers on par with those of Group I Cadre. But the Govt. under pressure from IAS officers opposed the commendations and resisted their implementation by the state Govt. The Coordination Committee constituted for this purpose compelled the Govt. to implement the revised pay scales in toto and the govt. conceded this demand and issued G.O.M.S No. 1072 Edn. Dated 26-10- 1976. With this the pay structure of the college teachers status was raised to that of IAS officers. The series of achievements wrested from the Govt. prompted co-ordination committee to further consolidate the organizations of college teachers under one banner i.e., FAPCTA in 1980 with a constitution and chapter of demands. College teachers once objects of pity, but today are objects of envy under the leadership of ACTA. ACTA (A) & TACTA were merged in the year 1988 and renamed as ACTA - AP signalling the united movement of aided college teachers in the state. A few bureaucrats however tried to save the system, being agitated over the collapse of a healthy system, but the rulers of the day being enamoured of the dollars flowing into their coffers prevented and accelerated the process of emaciation. The days of the aided systems are numbered and in no time aided system will be obliterated and only memories of the good old system will survive. Aided education system which began its marathon march in 1854 passed through liberalization in 1990 and privatization in 1999 and commercialization in 2000 dismantling the aided system of education. Can ACTA reverse this process and put it back on the rails is the historical question that ACTA has to answer. Privatisation, Liberalisation of education had opened the flood gates for commercialization of education beyond the reach of the poor and downtrodden denying them the benefits of higher education. The colleges which were opened prior to 31-12-1990, i.e. before liberalization of higher education 29 can provide education which would be within the reach of the poor people. That's why ACTA-AP had been demanding that all the colleges which were opened with the prior permission of the Govt. between 1-3-1985 and 31- 12-1990 should be admitted into grantin- aid and ACTA-AP is identified as the provider of education to the poor and deprived. Everything is going the drain. The people that were benefited by the aided system turned against it and wielded death blow on the system denying the benefits of aid to poor and the underprivileged by issuing orders, a mad man's exercise G.O. 35, dt. 27-03- 2006 rescinding all the benefits reaped making heavy sacrifices in the past. According to this G.O. there is a general ban on the recruitment of staff in aided colleges. As long as this G.O. is in vogue, the vacancies cannot be filled up in aided colleges, which will result in the closure of aided colleges in a couple of years. On account of this, thousands of part time college teachers are going about with a begging bowl looking to everybody for relief. This is the plight of the intellectuals. How long to suffer these indignities? It is time we rise and fight to protect the system that provides education to the poor and downtrodden. As a part of the ongoing dismantling of the aided structure, the Govt. increased the strength of students in a class abruptly and if the strength falls below this stipulated number, sections are declared to be un-economic and lecturers are found to be surplus. The Govt. calls it rationalization in the disguise of the closure of aided colleges. The surplus aided lectures are re-deployed to Govt. degree colleges in spite of several posts lying vacant in aided colleges. This is a planned way of killing the aided colleges. When a person is sick, killing is not the solution. The medicine has to be administered and steps to be taken to increase the longevity. The aided colleges are virtually on the death bed at present and they are suffering from lack of required staff on account of ban on recruitment, rationalization and lack of infrastructure, heavy reliance on part-time lecturers, irregular payment of salaries etc. Who will find the solution to all these problems? Shall we demand that all the benefits provided before 31-12-1990, should be retained fully or in piece meal? Shall we allow the Govt. to invade on us or resist? Shall we fight and if so, what forms have to be followed? The college teachers under the banner of ACTA should stand united and fight a bitter battle for a better life. ACTA calls on all employees in the aided system to fight back for all the benefits we earned over years. I wish all the primary members of ACTA-AP good luck in all your endeavours to rededicate yourself in the cause of higher education of the millions of poor and downtrodden students.