Baidyanath Ram at the janata darbar in Ranchi on Monday. Picture by Prashant Mitra
Ranchi, Oct. 29: State human resource development minister Baidyanath Ram’s janata darbars are always known to be different.
From daring transfer requests from unhappy teachers to subtle pleas of “favouritism” by harried mothers of weak students, Ram has seen it all during his public meetings.
Monday proved to be no different for the minister, as he convened a public meeting at BJP’s Ranchi office.
The day started with a very vocal demand from Kokar resident Aryan, who asked Ram to convert all schools in the state to English medium. Aryan and his associates stressed that it was the only way to ensure overall development of a child.
The stunned minister tried reasoning with his janata. He said he could set up more English-medium schools in Kokar, but doing away with Hindi-medium schools was impractical. But, Aryan and his men stood their ground.
Ram had little choice but to end the conversation, saying he would look into his plea and act according to the rules.
Next in line was Tamar’s Tarun Singh who wanted the minister to come up with a primary school at Lupung village without delay. The hitch: he had not bothered to submit a formal request in this regard to the HRD department.
Dhirendra Kumar Mishra’s plea, of being selected as a teacher, initially struck a chord with Ram. Mishra not only had merit in his request, but had also topped the recruitment test for postgraduate teachers. He definitely had a case till it was found out that he did not have a BEd degree.
A resident of Harmu Housing Colony, Jaimangla Jha complained that drains near her home overflowed and dirty water sullied her premises. She claimed she had approached the RRDA a number of times, but in vain. Unfortunately, she could not produce a complaint slip.
The two-hour darbar, however, heard more genuine grievances too.
A resident of Giridih’s Bengabad, Sunil Kumar, told the minister that there were no teachers in government schools in his locality and the district superintendent of education was indifferent. He claimed that the education officer too had turned a deaf ear to pleas by panchayat heads on the matter.
Concerned, Ram invited Kumar to his office for further discussions.
The rural body members had also convened a meeting recently wherein they said that the government school should urgently hold special classes to cover the pending syllabus. However, the district superintendent of education failed to act on it
The panchayat heads, on their part have not been able to do much as they had no say in the functioning of the schools.
Speaking to The Telegraph later, BJP’s Ranchi office in charge Gama Singh said they had received as many as 86 applications during the course of the janta durbar.
“Most of them were regarding transfers, postings, regularisation of services, payment arrears, financial irregularities and pension amounts. The minister has promised to look into most of them and has given necessary directions to concerned officials in this regard,” Singh said.