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Barkakaty drove the fil il in contractual teachers’ coffin?

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, June 7: Despite giving assurances for as many as 46 times, former State Education Minister Sarat Barkataky stopped short of regularizing the jobs of some 6,767 contractual teachers in the high schools and high madrassas in the State. Rather, at the fag-end of the term of the Congress government in the State, the Education Department led by Barkataky implemented the tiol Teacher Training Education (NCTC) norm for the contractual teachers on May 17, 2016, making the chances of regularization of their posts bleak. As though what was done by the department drove the last il in the ill-fated teachers’ coffin.

Talking to newsmen in the city today, the All Assam High School/High Madrassa Additiol Teachers’ Association (AAHS/HMATA) president Tapan Bhuyan and chief secretary Karu Kalita said: “We were appointed in August 2010 through the Strength and Improved Quality of Secondary Education Scheme in high schools and high madrassas in the State on contractual basis. The deputy commissioner of each district was made the chairman of the selection committee and the selection was purely based on merit. In the past five years, we did move the State Education Minister many times for the regularization of our jobs, but to little avail. Former Education Minister Sarat Barkataky alone assured us of regularizing our jobs as many as 46 times. Let alone regularizing our posts, he made the process of regularization of our posts even more difficult. A day after the results of the 2016 Assembly elections were announced, the minister implemented the NCTE norm for us. According to this norm, a contractual teacher should have B.Ed degree apart from securing at least 50 per cent marks in his/her Bachelor’s degree examition. What has been done by the minister at the fag-end of his term has made it crystal clear that he had never wanted to regularize our jobs. Now the situation is such that if we are to get our jobs regularized, we need to do B.Ed, if not, we would continue to remain as contractual teachers.”

The AAHS/HMATA leaders said that B.Ed degree was not made compulsory at the time of their appointment. “However, all the contractual teachers do fulfil the 50 per cent marks in their degree examition as that norm was followed while appointing us,” the AAHS/HMATA leaders said, and added: “What’s strange is that we haven’t got salaries of five months. The Congress government failed to pay us our salaries at its fag-end.”

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Ankur Kalita