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HC clears tutor dues

The high court on Friday directed the district inspector of schools, North 24-Parganas, to disburse increments due to a teacher since she got her PhD certificate in December 2003.

Sharmistha Das, who teaches at Belgharia Deshapriya Vidyaniketan Girls’ High School, had moved court after not getting the two special increments that teachers who complete PhD are entitled to, according to a circular issued by the educational directorate of Bengal on January 5 this year

The state government’s lawyers had submitted that she should get the hikes from the day the circular was issued, and not December 24, 2003, when she had got her PhD certificate.

Justice Ashok Das Adhikari directed the district inspector of schools to “disburse the two due additional increments of the petitioner teacher from the date she had received the PhD honour”.

Currently, a postgraduate teacher gets a starting salary of Rs 21,000. Those with a PhD get Rs 2,000 more.

Das joined the school in July 1998 after completing her MSc in physics and BEd. She did her PhD from Jadavpur University.

Counsel for the teacher, Laxmi Pal, submitted his client was entitled to two increments under the 1990 and 1999 Revision of Pay and Allowances rules for state government employees. “But the state education department did not grant her any hikes,” he said.

The lawyer also filed the January 5 circular and cited a recent Supreme Court judgment ordering the authorities to pay additional allowances to schoolteachers with a PhD.

The state lawyer, Tulshi Das Roy, submitted: “The petitioner teacher should get the additional increment from January 5 and not from 2003.”