Hinting at another flashpoint between the Delhi government and the Lieutenant Governor, Education Minister Manish Sisodia has written to L-G Anil Baijal asking him to put on hold the recruitment process of teachers advertised by Delhi Subordinate Services Selection Board (DSSSB).
Sisodia stated that the advertisement does not mention what weightage will be given to the 17,000 guest teachers, who are working in Delhi government schools, during the recruitment process. The advertisement only mentions the age relaxation for the number of years these teachers have taught in the schools.
Meanwhile, the DSSSB stated in the High Court that recruitment of 14,820 teachers for Directorate of Education (DoE) and MCD schools was advertised on August 7. “The policy of giving age relaxation and weightage to guest teachers was passed by the Cabinet in 2015. However, in May 2016, only the policy of age relaxation was approved by the then L-G Najeeb Jung, decision for weightage was not approved on the basis of the advice of the additional Solicitor General based on Uma Devi judgment. Since then, however, the legal position on this issue has changed,” Sisodia wrote in the letter.
He said that the Supreme Court has clarified and stated that the Uma Devi judgment does not prelude the policy of weightage. Citing the judgment dated August 2016 and November 2016, he said the policy of giving weightage was upheld to contractual employees when permanent vacancies were advertised.
He said multiple instructions to the Chief Secretary and the DoE, asking to put the recruitment process on hold, have not been followed. “It is a source of great surprise to me that such an advertisement has been issued, given the repeated instructions. The only explanation is that after Delhi High Court judgment that stated ‘services come under the L-G’, these officers have not followed any instructions from minister-in-charge on any service-related matters that come within the purview of elected government,” said the letter.
Stating that education comes under the purview of the elected government, Sisodia has asked the process to be put on hold till the DoE formulates a policy for giving weightage to guest teachers. He has also warned that removal of trained and experienced guest teachers will have an adverse impact on government schools and create a situation of chaos and crisis.
Regularisation of guest teachers was one of the promises by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in their manifesto. The guest teachers have, on several occasions, protested against the delay in fulfilment of the promise.