GUWAHATI, June 29 - Thousands of TET-qualified contractual teachers working in various lower primary schools of the State gathered for a protest meeting in the field of the College of Veterinary Science, Khanapara here today to press for regularisation of their jobs with pay protection.
Organiser of the protest meeting, the Sadou Asam Prathamik TET Uttirna Sikshak Samaj (SAPTUSS), had earlier announced that they would take out a protest rally from the field to Dispur today. But the police administration did not allow them to take out the rally.
Today�s protest meeting was a fallout of the failure of a meeting held between Education Minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya and a delegation of the organisation on June 27, to evolve any solution.
According to the minutes of the June 27 meeting, the Minister had assured the delegation that he would place the proposal to consider all contractual teachers and state pool teachers working under the Sarba Siksha Abhiyan (SSA) as in-service teachers for the purpose of regularisation of their services against vacant posts of regular teachers under the Department of Elementary Education and to provide relaxation in case of upper age limit and validity period of the TET certificate, at the next Cabinet meeting.
At the meeting the Minister had assured that services of TET teachers would be regularised against vacant posts of regular teachers as and when such regular vacancies would arise under the State government department.
Bhattacharya had further told the delegation that the State government would consider the matter of reservation of vacant regular posts of assistant teachers for the agitating teachers and that the matter would come up for discussion at the Cabinet meeting soon.
At the same meeting the Minister had also warned that the State government would take legal action against some working teachers who allegedly make personal derogatory, unconstitutional and defamatory comments on ministers, government officials and others on social media.
Meanwhile, talking to The Assam Tribune today, finance secretary of the organisation Kulajit Thakuria said, �The meeting held on June 27, was an informal one. It was nothing but a conspiracy by the State government to gag our voice as the meeting did not address our one and only demand, that of regularisation of service with pay protection.�
Thakuria further alleged that all the assurances made by the Education Minister at the June 27 meeting were totally vague, as it is not possible to regularise the services of more than 40,000 TET-qualified contractual lower primary school teachers through the process he had proposed.
Meanwhile, as part of the protest today, the agitating teachers submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister through the Commissioner of Police.
In the memorandum the organisation stated that the State government should take immediate steps to fulfil the assurances made in the election manifesto during the last Legislative Assembly elections.
The organisation also alleged that the Education Minister and higher officials of the education department are yet to respond to their demand despite requests and appeals from time to time.
On June 18, the agitating teachers had sent copies of a memorandum to the Chief Minister on the same demand through the deputy commissioner of every district of the State, but the Chief Minister did not respond.
The agitating TET-qualified teachers urged the Chief Minister to address the matter as early as possible in the greater interest of a healthy educational environment in the lower primary level.