GUWAHATI: Eying Assembly elections expected early next year, the ruling BJP in Assam has solved a longstanding demand of the state’s contractual teachers by making their jobs permanent.
The state’s Education Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said the 46,150 contractual teachers would be eligible to benefits on a par with the regular government school teachers.
“I won’t say the jobs of the 46,150 contractual teachers have been regularised but they will be able to serve till they attain the retirement age of 60 years,” Sarma told journalists.
These teachers were appointed over the past eight years and they are posted across the state.
“The contractual teachers will get salaries, increments, dearness allowance and other facilities equal to government teachers. They can avail of casual leave, earned leave and maternity leave. They can also avail of bank loans and the government will give an undertaking,” the Minister said adding, “Henceforth, there will be no difference between the contractual teachers and the regular government teachers”.
Assam has 29,701 Teacher’s Eligibility Test or TET teachers under the Axom Sarba Siksha Abhiyan Mission, 11,206 state pool teachers, and 5,243 high school teachers.
Sarma said no teacher could seek transfer without serving for at least 10 years at the place of his or her posting. He informed that the Governor had approved the Act.
As per the government’s decision, Assamese will be a compulsory subject in all schools, both government and private, up to class X.
The contractual teachers had been fighting for long demanding their jobs be regularised. Last year, some 15,000 teachers from all over the state had gathered in Guwahati and staged a protest seeking the fulfillment of their demands.
The government’s decision on making their jobs permanent is expected to benefit the BJP in the polls. The party’s image took a beating due to the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. At least five people had lost their lives during violent protests against the Act in December last year.