Patna: In Bihar, teacher aspirants are on an agitation in Patna for over a week, demanding start of the seventh phase of recruitment of school teachers. The protestors have qualified the teachers’ eligibility test (TET) and are desperate for jobs. And it is not the first time they have been on agitation for a demand that has been there for three years.
However, chief minister Nitish Kumar has given them hope that more recruitments will be done. “I have asked the education department to speed up the process. Those working well will deservedly also get salary hike, but I have asked the education minister to remove those not working. The teachers must teach well,” he said at the Shiksha Diwas function, where he also launched an app to monitor schools on a real-time basis.
Teacher aspirants protested half-naked
Giving an indication of the government approach to set things right in the education sphere, the CM’s statement should give hope to the agitating teachers. However, the agitation goes on, with the protesting candidates demanding issue of notification for seventh phase recruitments. In course of the ongoing agitation, the candidates have tried everything – from getting heads shaved to half-naked protest and deluge of posts on the social media – to draw the attention of the authorities over the last 7-8 days.
Tejashwi supported protesters when in opposition
“The way deputy CM Tejashwi Prasad Yadav had supported us when he was in the opposition, we had hoped fresh recruitments will start soon, but now despite education minister Chandrashekhar from the RJD, we don’t know how long it will take. The Grand Alliance (GA) government should at least issue the notification, as there are huge vacancies. How can the quality of education in schools improve without adequate strength of teachers? We are qualified, yet on the road,” say the agitationists, which include both men and women.
The agitation by TET qualified teacher aspirants has been frequent this year. It happened during the NDA government and continues even during the GA government. Earlier, the RJD sympathised with them, now the BJP and AAP have been speaking for them. The end result is the same – they are on road, protesting and the political blame game is on.
BJP MLC takes dig at CM’s warning to teachers
BJP MLC Nawal Kishore Yadav took exception to Nitish Kumar’s warning to teachers, saying he was the one responsible for spooling education in the state, as the education department which can not even ensure monthly salary to college and school teachers has no right to point fingers at them. “Nitish Kumar should know that he can penalise teachers only when they are there. The number of teachers is inadequate despite the government upgrading schools in files. How can the teachers be blamed?” he asked.
Agitating candidates firm on stir
The agitating candidates say they will not end the agitation until the government wakes up to do the needful. “Young men and women on the roads crying for their legitimate demand is not what the government should allow, but for us it is a Hobson’s choice The government should sympathise with us. Even family members ask us as to when will our turn come. The government upgraded schools to have one higher secondary school in every panchayat, but without adequate teachers how they run can be anyone’s guess,” say the protestors.
Education minister Chandrashekhar says that for appointments, the candidates should have patience, as education department process was on, and they should not fall in the trap of politics. But the candidates are not convinced.
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Barely 3.22% teachers qualified BPSC’s exam for head masters
For the government, the biggest problem has been filling vacant seats as per reservation formula. Last time it tried earlier this year, more than half the seats remained vacant. It initiated a process to appoint head masters through the Bihar Public Service Commission (BPSC) this year, but barely 3.22% teachers could qualify. What is more, several teachers resign after joining once they get better opportunities.