Rajasthan withdraws clause threatening pay cut for skipping Teachers’ Day

The Rajasthan education department revised two of its orders related to the teachers’ day function in Jaipur on September 5. In the first, teachers were threatened with a pay cut for the day if they skipped the event; in the second, they were told to avoid the colour black in their clothes and accessories.

jaipur Updated: Sep 01, 2018 07:49 IST
Rakesh Goswami
Rakesh Goswami
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Rajasthan,teachers’ day
The state education department is organising a state-level function near the state Assembly in Jaipur to felicitate one teacher from all 33 districts.(HT/Picture for representation)

The Rajasthan education department revised two of its orders related to the teachers’ day function in Jaipur on September 5. In the first, teachers were threatened with a pay cut for the day if they skipped the event; in the second, they were told to avoid the colour black in their clothes and accessories, both drawing sharp criticism from the Congress.

The state education department is organising a state-level function near state Assembly in Jaipur to felicitate one teacher from all 33 districts. Schoolteachers appointed post December 13, 2013 — the day the Vasundhara Raje government was sworn in — have been invited to the function.

On August 29, district education officers of secondary and elementary education in Bharatpur issued an order to block elementary education officers and nodal officers to deduct salary of teachers who don’t attend the Jaipur function. The order drew flak from teachers’ organisations, leading to a revision of the order on August 30.

In another diktat, the district education officer of Hanumangarh district told teachers to not wear black clothes, shoes, socks and belt, and not even carry a black handkerchief. The government is worried the colour black could lead to protests.

Both these orders —copies of which are with HT— were later revised to remove these controversial clauses after Congress and teachers organisations cried foul. All India Congress Committee general secretary and former Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot hit out at the Raje government for these diktats.

“The government is worried about public resentment and has issued orders to teachers not to wear black clothes or carry any black objects,” he said in a statement on Friday. Gehlot added that the government was discriminating against teachers by calling only those appointed post 2013 when it was spending Rs 11.51 crore on the function for political gain.

Naresh Pal Gangwar, principal secretary of education department, told a local Hindi daily that no orders on pay cut and black clothes were issued by the government. “The DEOs have been told to not issue such orders,” he was quoted as saying. Gangwar said the newly-appointed teachers were invited to the function so that they feel a sense of pride.

Government’s paranoia over the colour black was evident in Barmer, too, where chief minister Vasundhara Raje’s Rajasthan Gaurav Yatra will reach on September 1.

First Published: Sep 01, 2018 00:03 IST