Uttar Pradesh: After SC ruling, shiksha mitras stage statewide protest
Upset over the Supreme Court ruling which cancelled the appointment of 1.69 lakh shiksha mitras as assistant teachers in government junior schools, a large number of contractual teachers staged demonstrations across the state on Wednesday.
The protesters gave a memorandum to basic education miniser Anupama Jaiswal, stating that the Supreme Court observation asking shiksha mitras to clear the teachers’ eligibility test (TET) in two years will make the teachers jobless.
The minister said, “Our legal team will study the order. We will follow the apex court order but will remain sympathetic towards para teachers.” In Gorakhpur, teachers converged outside Gorakhnath temple to seek help from chief minister Yogi Adityanath, who is expected to arrive there on Thursday on the occasion of Nag Panchami. Some women protesters fainted during the agitation and were taken to hospital.
Over 500 shiksha mitras, including women, also tried to enter the temple. But they were stopped by the police. The protest continued for hours.
“We respect the SC observation, but oppose such a move as the decision will render thousands of shiksha mitras jobless,” said Sawan Kumar, a protester.
In Bahraich too, thousands of shiksha mitras held a protest at the office of the Bahraich district magistrate and blocked the Lucknow-Bahraich NH 28 C for hours. They raised slogans against the state and central governments.
Finally, the district administration managed to persuade the shiksha mitras to clear the blockade.
Despite the Right to Education Act 2009 that debarred untrained teachers from teaching in government schools, the Akhilesh government merged the post of shiksha mitras with the post of assistant teacher in 2014 and 2015.
On September 12, 2015, the Allahabad high court cancelled the merger. However, the Akhilesh government moved the apex court against the verdict of the Allahabad high court.
In the meantime, all the shiksha mitras continued working and drawing salary as assistant teachers.
In Lakhimpur Kheri, hundreds of Shiksha Mitras boycotted work and held a massive yet peaceful demonstration at the district basic education office on Wednesday.
Owing to boycott of work by shiksha mitras, hundreds of primary schools of the district remained closed on Wednesday.