Faculty members at Delhi’s Dr BR Ambedkar University alleged in a memorandum that they face “targeted harassment” and a worsening work environment.

In the memorandum released on August 17, the university’s faculty association said that the university has faced a “consistent downward trajectory” in the past few years. It noted that in 2016, the university was listed in the National Institutional Ranking Framework among the top 100 universities in the country. However, as per the latest rankings, it was not even among the top 200.

The faculty association said that the university had not notified service rules, which led to a lack of clarity for professors. It further alleged that faculty members are regularly denied no-objection certificates for academic activities or for visas. “Carrying out external projects has become so cumbersome that faculty members are giving up research opportunities to save themselves from the red tape,” it said.

The association also alleged that faculty members are harassed by the administration on various grounds. “There is a running thread of purposeful regressive interpretation of decisions taken by the administration and/or committees in the past,” it said. “This leads to faculty being subjected to punitive action for no fault of theirs.”

The professors also alleged that the Career Advancement Scheme – a policy introduced by the University Grants Commission for the promotion of teachers – was being implemented through arbitrary enforcement of regulations.

“Delays in holding CAS meetings and denial of past service have become the norm,” they said. “A deplorable trend towards rewarding select faculty for research while denying a fair chance at progress to most is emerging.”

The university’s press relations office, however, said the administration follows the university Act, statutes and ordinances, The Indian Express reported.

The administration also said that the Career Advancement Scheme has been implemented on a regular basis since 2019 and that 36 faculty members have been promoted through it. The university added that there are discrepancies in the University Grants Commission’s eligibility guidelines for the scheme, and that such cases were being reviewed, according to The Hindu.