Submitted by Editor on Wed, 2016-08-03 19:30 Bengaluru: Graduates in environmental science have warned state universities of legal action for failing to employ them by flouting a SC ruling which had asked the subject to be made compulsory and appoint professors to teach the subject. Way back in 1992-93, the Supreme Court, following a PIL, had ruled that environmental science (ES) should be a compulsory subject in schools and colleges. This had heralded a boom of sorts, as many rushed to study environmental science, hoping to secure a job and a bright future. However, it did not take too long for them to realise that they were just chasing a mirage. The varsities churned out graduates by the dozens, but they had no jobs. “The state has 1650 post graduates, 200 M.Phil, and 250 Ph.D degree holders. Majority of them are qualified to become teachers as they have cleared National Eligibility Test (NET), an eligibility criteria for appointment as assistant professors in varsities. But only three of them are appointed as professors so far,” informed one of the graduates on condition of anonymity. Pointing out to the Supreme Court order, members of the Environmental Science Graduates Association (ESGA) said the court order was to appoint professors in environmental science and make the subject compulsory in all the educational institutes. “It is almost 24 years after the Supreme Court order but many institutions have not even implemented the apex court ruling,” said a member of ESGA. “A few of them have made this as a subject to be taught on the lines of distance education by having weekly contact classes. In many cases, the subject is not being taught by qualified ES professionals. Instead teachers of life science subjects, commerce, management and humanities are entrusted with this responsibility.” The member said in universities, professors from departments of botany, zoology and other life sciences run the show. “Students who graduated in early 1990s are working in places which are unrelated with their subject,” he added. In 2014, students had repeatedly written to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, minister for higher education, state government officials, and other authorities. They demanded replacing existing teachers without ES degrees in ES departments by students with requisite ES degrees. The graduates also demanded environment science to be made compulsory, and age relaxation up to 45 years so that the graduates deprived of jobs can be considered. Since there has been no response from the government, they are now contemplating legal action.