Not paid for the past three months, teachers under the banner of SSA/RMSA (Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan/ Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan) teachers' union have decided to launch a protest against the state government.
The representatives of the union held a meeting in Patiala on Saturday and decided that the strategy for the protest would be finalised after a state body meeting in Jalandhar on December 7.
Addressing the meeting, Hardeep Singh, state activist of the union said it was a sorry state of affairs that the state government had failed to release the salaries of more than 12,000 teachers recruited under the SSA and RMSA schemes.
"The government should declare itself bankrupt if it is unable to pay teachers on time," he said. Singh added that in the past three months, the union had met authorities concerned and education minister Daljeet Singh Cheema several times but to no avail.
The teachers recruited under SSA get 65% share of their salary from the Centre while the state government pays the remaining 35%. In case of RMSA teachers, the salary share is 75% and 25% between the centre and the state respectively.
Under the scheme, teachers are deployed in government schools across the state since 2008 and are paid Rs 30,000-35,000.
Aatinder Pal Singh, district president of the union, said the authorities gave excuses about allocation of central funds but the reality was that the state government itself was responsible for the plight of the teachers.
"Despite repeated communiqués by the Centre pertaining to merging of teachers of SSA/RMSA scheme into the state education department, the Punjab government has created a different cadre which is illegal," he said.