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Ahmedabad: Over 50 teachers decline to join municipal corporation school board

The teachers, including some principals, have cited red-tapism in availing pension, far-off postings and few years of service remaining as some of the reasons for choosing not to join the AMC school board and continuing under the district panchayat department.

Written by Ritu Sharma | Ahmedabad | Updated: December 10, 2020 3:29:43 pm
Following 2006 delimitation, Daskroi and Ahmedabad city taluka panchayats in Ahmedabad district were merged with AMC. Representational image/ file

MORE THAN 50 of the 990 government teachers from 103 primary schools that were recently transferred to the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) after a delay of nearly 15 years have opted not to join the corporation school board.

The teachers, including some principals, have cited red-tapism in availing pension, far-off postings and few years of service remaining as some of the reasons for choosing not to join the AMC school board and continuing under the district panchayat department.

Chandrakant Raval (54), a headteacher at Government Primary School at Thaltej area in Ahmedabad city, was among the teachers who declined to join the AMC school board after the school was transferred from the district panchayat.

“I have just five years of service remaining. Once I retire, I have to first run from one department to another to get a pension, which will also be calculated separately by the district and corporation offices based on my years of service under these two. Also, for every other issue related to pension, I will have to visit the two departments each time,” Raval said. He has been shifted to Lilapur from Thaltej, where he taught for eight years at a government primary school under district panchayat.

Another teacher, Kunjalben Mandaliya (43), posted at Bhadaj for last seven years, said she would be transferred to a school in Sanand, about 50 km from her current posting, if she had joined the municipal school board. “Since I have a child, I could not afford to spend so much time in commuting. Also, the distance would have added to my financial burden,” she said.

Following 2006 delimitation, Daskroi and Ahmedabad city taluka panchayats in Ahmedabad district were merged with AMC. Chandkheda and Motera village panchayats in Gandhinagar district were also merged into AMC limits that year. While AMC took over all other civic functions, it was yet to bring 45 schools under Ahmedabad city taluka panchayat, 50 in Daskroi taluka panchayat and eight in Gandhinagar district panchayat under its jurisdiction. On August 7, the state government, through a notification, ordered the 103 government primary schools and its 990 teachers to be merged with AMC. The transfer further delayed due to Covid-19 pandemic and was implemented only last month, officials said.

Due to administrative and financial disputes during these 15 years – from 2006 when the merge was announced and 2020 when it was implemented — not only the teachers of these 103 schools awaited transfers but also nearly 34,000 students were deprived of infrastructure and other facilities, sources said.

“If a teacher has served for 30 years at a district panchayat school and another five years or even a few months at a municipal corporation school, his/her pension would be calculated on the basis of the service period and disbursed by two separate treasury departments. Post-retirement, teachers find this a hassle and an unnecessary legwork,” a cluster resource coordinator (CRC) of AMC school board explains.

While the state government was notified in the matter and reminded about it time to time, requests to revise the policy went unheeded. L D Desai, the administrative officer of AMC School Board, however, said, “The process of revising this policy is on but there has been no decision yet.”

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