It was day of protests in Bathinda, with teachers working under the education guarantee scheme holding the Bathinda-Mansa road hostage for over two years and, in another protest, Suwidha Kendra employees and deputy commissioner employees blocking the road near the Bathinda bus stand on Monday.
Traffic came to stand still in the city as long queues of vehicles could be seen on roads leading to Mansa, Bathinda city and Dabwali.
Local police had to divert traffic through link roads to ease out congestion on these roads.
Demanding job regularisation, hundreds of teachers working under Education Guarantee Scheme (EGS)/ Alternative Innovative Education (AIE) and Special Trainer (STR) schemes started a protest near the dolphin chowk.
The teachers rued that the Punjab government ha not regularised their services even after they completed their two-year contract with the government.
Gagan Deep Kaur, state committee member of the Shaheed Kiranjeet Kaur EGS/AIE/STR Teachers' Union, said though the government had taken a decision about job regularisation on December 19 in a special assembly session, the union government was still unclear whether the decision was taken or not.
“We will lift the protest only after the local administration gives us an assurance about the government decision,” Kaur said.
She added that the government had made a two-year contract with more than 7,000 EGS/AIE/STR volunteers in 2014 and promised them to regularise their services after completion of the agreement.
“Our contract got completed in February, but the government has not ordered our regularisation yet,” she said.
Meanwhile, accompanied by government employees, under the banner of the Punjab State Deputy Commissioner (DC) Office Employees’ Union, protestors under Punjab state suwidha centre employees blocked the road near main bus stand.
The agitators also held a protest march from the bus stand to the mini-secretariat.
The contractual employees of suvidha centre were demanding regularisation of jobs in respective government departments.
However, Megh Singh Sidhu, district president of DC employees union, said the employees have been demanding an increase in pay, release of pending dearness allowance arrears of 23 months, pension benefits to all employees as per the old pension scheme (instead of contributory pension) and promotions.