Amid making two futile attempts to climb atop a water tank in the chief minister’s Badal village in Muktsar, unemployed teachers have been sitting on a dharna at the neighbouring Jaisingh Wala village, occupying the water tank there, for the past five months.
The protesters, who have cleared the teacher eligibility test, have been demanding jobs against more than 7,000 vacant posts in primary schools across the state. Many of these protesters had even attended counselling during the recruitments to fill 2,000 posts in September.
They have now resolved to intensify their agitation with the state elections around the corner.
“We have faced police lathis both in Badal village and Bathinda, but we will not budge. Two of our fellow protesters on Thursday climbed atop a mobile tower near Punjab Bhawan in Chandigarh,” said Pawan Kumar, addressing other jobless teachers at the protest site in Jaisinghwala on Friday.
Pawan, who has cleared the TET twice, had also climbed atop the Punjab mini civil secretariat building in Chandigarh last week. Besides, he along the protesters with three other protesters has warned the government of committing self-immolation if their demand is not met.
Talking to HT, the protesters accused the state government of “scuttling” their chances of employment after clearing the TET, with many of them being allegedly “dropped” after counselling.
They said the government has conducted the exam five times since 2011, with the last one conducted in December 2015.
Resolving to intensify the agitation, Pawan said: “We will reach the venue and protest at every event that chief minister Parkash Singh Badal attends.”
Earlier, too, the jobless teachers have made failed bids to gatecrash such events.
The protesters have been rounded up many times during Badal’s public meetings, mainly in Muktsar and Bathinda districts, and events like the Maghi Mela at Muktsar, in the past three years.