School and Higher Secondary Minister Bratya Basu who is learnt to be opposed to the governments decision to cut a days salary of school teachers who were absent on February 28,the day of the strike was on Saturday summoned by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to Writers Buildings.
Yesterday,the state government had issued a a circular declaring that teachers of government schools and colleges,including those working in government-aided institutions,who didnt make it to their workplace on February 28 have to suffer a pay cut if they did not furnish a proper reason for their absence. The school education department on Friday forwarded the copy of the show-cause notice to government and government-aided schools. The higher education department followed suit.
Bratya,who is learnt to be against this circular,had an hour-long meeting with Mamata today in the presence of Mukul Roy,general secretary of AITC.
After the meeting, a police officer sent by the Chief Ministers Office told the mediapersons waiting outside the CMs room that Basu will not brief the media.
Significantly,this is the first instance in which a police personnel was sent by the CMO to tell reporters not to pose any questions to Basu.
This has sparked speculation that Mamata snubbed Basu for making such comments in public. Earlier on March 4,Basu had said he would not like to do detective work to find out who did not report to duty on February 28. He had added that just as one has the right to work (when a strike is called) one also has the right not to come at work.
According to sources,Mamata told Basu that his remarks were unwanted,and it was particularly so when the departments under him have circulated Chief Secretarys directive before the strike to various educational institutions and are also preparing a list of the employees who did not report to duty on the day of strike.