PUTA polls: TUF records victory, says will fight for teachers’ rights
In a close fight, the Teachers United Front (TUF) got better of the Progressive Teachers’ Alliance (PTA) in the Punjabi University Teachers’ Association (PUTA) polls that took place in Patiala on Friday.
Only the regular and ad hoc faculty working on the varsity campus and at the regional centres and neighbourhood campuses participated in the election process.
Jaswinder Singh Brar, of economics department, was elected the PUTA president. He won with a margin of 13 votes. Brar bagged 255 votes, while his opponent and former PUTA president Bhupinder Singh Virk (of law department) got 242 votes.
PTA’s Sumandeep Kaur was elected as the vice-president by receiving 260 votes, while TUF’s candidate Harjinder Singh, of electronics and communication engineering department, got 244 votes.
The TUF clinched all the others posts including those of secretary, joint secretary and four executive members. For the post of secretary, Gurnam Virk, from social work department, bagged 259 votes. He defeated Jasdeep Singh Toor, of economics department, who got 248 votes.
For joint secretary-cum-treasurer’s post, Poonam Patyar, of chemistry department, won with 256 votes against her opponent Gurpreet Singh Dhanoa, of civil engineering department, who won 248 votes.
Meanwhile, TUF’s Avneet Pal Singh, Sikander Singh Cheema, Harish Kumar and Ashok Bathla were elected as the executive members.
After winning the elections, the newly elected president Brar said that it is a victory of teh university faculty, who supported the alliance and their candidates.
“The newly elected PUTA body will ensure that the demands of teachers are taken up with the varsity management and the state government,” Brar said.
PTA gives tough fight
despite having only three teachers’ bodies in its alliance, the PTA gave a tough competition to TUF that had eight teachers’ groups in its alliance.
Last year’s winning alliance, Progressive Teachers’ Alliance, which includes members of Centre for University Teachers (CUT), Democratic Teachers’ Council (DTC) and Sikh Intellectual Forum (SIF), had announced the same coalition this year.
On the other hand, eight groups of teachers formed the Teachers’ United Front (TUF). The head of Punjabi development department, professor Yograj, has been elected as the convener of the alliance.
Yograj said the eight groups include Democratic Teachers’ Front (DTF), Progressive Teachers’ Council (PTC), Platform for University Teachers (PUT), Teachers for Common Cause (TCC), Teachers for Intervention in Education (TIE), Teachers for Society, (TFS), University Teachers’ Front (UTF) and Yadwindra College of Engineering (YCOE).