Shillong, Aug. 31: Meghalaya school and college teachers, under the banner of Joint Action Committee of All Teachers Associations of Meghalaya, have decided to go ahead with their protest against the state government’s “adamant attitude”.
The committee is a group of school and college teachers’ associations belonging to the deficit and ad hoc category. There are over 4,000 schools and 13,000 schoolteachers under the deficit and ad hoc pattern in the state.
“We are going ahead with our agitation as a mark of protest against the government’s step-motherly treatment to us,” committee chairman E.D. Nongsiang said. The teachers are unhappy with the government, as policy-makers have been unwilling to have a dialogue with them on their demands.
In a meeting here today, the school and college teachers decided to go ahead with their mass casual leave on Tuesday, to be followed by a dharna across the state on Wednesday and a public meeting at Malki ground on Thursday (Teachers’ Day).
Nongsiang said the committee wants to discuss their demands either with deputy chief minister Roytre Christopher Laloo or chief minister Mukul M. Sangma. The teachers want to discuss the education policy, reformation of Meghalaya Board of School Education, regular payment of salary and provincialisation of teachers.
Earlier, the state government had declared that the “reasonable demands” of the teachers would be examined and corrective action taken as and where possible. Nongsiang, however, said the talks with the government should be “unconditional”.
“The question as to whether our demands are reasonable or otherwise will be clear only if we sit across the table and discuss. How can the government say in advance that certain demands are unreasonable?” he asked.