A FEW hours after the shiksha mitras (ad hoc teachers) staged a massive demonstration in Lucknow, demanding permanent jobs, the state government on Monday issued a statement announcing that they will be allowed to appear for Teachers Eligibility Test (TET) — to be conducted in October — to become eligible for the post of teachers.
Also, shiksha mitras will be given an additional 2.5 marks for each year of their experience — with 25 marks being the maximum one could get — when they sit for assistant teachers’ recruitment examinations, after qualifying TET. The advertisement for recruitment as assistant teachers in primary schools will be issued on December and all eligible (TET qualified) candidates will be allowed to apply for the same, the government said. Till then, shiksha mitras will be paid honorarium of Rs 10,000 per month, from August 1.
The statement added that shiksha mitras, who had been absorbed as full-time teachers in the past but whose absorption was quashed by the Allahabad High Court and later by the Supreme Court, will be reverted to their full-time jobs from August 1. They will have the option to either take charge in the school where they were posted as full-time teachers or at schools where there were first posted as shiksa mitras.
Last month, the Supreme Court had quashed the appointment of shiksha mitras as full-time teachers — a move undertaken by the Akhilesh regime in 2014. More than 1.3 lakh shiksha mitras were affected by the order. Earlier in the day, demanding an ordinance that gives them permanent jobs and “same salary for same work”, shiksha mitras from across the state had gathered in Lucknow, throwing traffic out of gear for several hours in Hazratganj and its adjoining areas.
The protest was held under the banner Adarsh Samayojit Shiksha Mitra Welfare Association. The association claimed that over one lakh shiksha mitras had turned up for the event at Lakshman Mela ground near Hazratganj. Police, however, pegged the number at 40,000 to 50,000.
“The protest was peaceful and no unwanted incident took place. The gathering saw around a crowd of 40,000 to 50,000,” Lucknow SSP Deepak Kumar said. “We were fully prepared with adequate force. Majority of those who joined the protest have left, but we are ready if they continue the protest,” he added.