Bhopal district education officer amended his child care leave cancellation order on Wednesday after teachers threatened to launch a massive agitation against the same.
Bhopal district education officer Dharmendra Sharma had on Tuesday issued a notification stating all child care leave stood cancelled in view of the board examinations. He even maintained that the order was effective throughout the state.
However, on Wednesday, he amended the notification after facing strong protests from the teachers and said those who had already availed themselves of the leave would be exempt from the order. “But we are not accepting any new application till April 30,” he said.
However, additional chief secretary SR Mohanty denied having any knowledge of the order and expressed surprise as to how a district officer could take a policy decision without consulting it with the headquarters.
In May 2015, chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had increased the duration of the child care leave for women employees in the public sector enterprises to 730 days. The leave is allowed to an employee if her children are below 18. It is valid up to two children.
However, some teachers’ associations have threatened to launch an agitation to exert pressure on the education department to withdraw the order. Secretary general government teachers association Arif Anjum said woman teachers would take out rallies in all the districts, burn effigies of authorities and submit a memoranda to the chief minister.
A government teacher said, “Our children also have their exams in the same duration and that’s why at this point of time, the leave is very crucial for us. We are really confused as to what should we do now to manage our kids’ exams with the duty.”
Another school teacher said, “It’s not like we did not complete our course. Even when we are on leave, we are devoting 2-3 hours at school to fulfil all our duties. This decision of district education office is like a shock to the teachers because all other women government employees can avail themselves of the leave.”