C Times, 21st June 2017, Agartala
The All Tripura 10323 Teachers Association on 21st June Submitted a deputation to the Director, Education Department to give them in writing officially the demands they have stated.
First of all, they demanded a written document from the education department expressing the departments’ views on the supreme courts’ judgement dated 29/03/2017 along with their views on media’s reaction. Secondly, the 10323 teachers whose jobs will be terminated on 31st December 2017 to be absorbed by the state govt. on a regular pay scale. They also demanded the department to provide them in writing that their services shall continue after 31st December and the govt. will undertake to safeguard their financial needs. Last but not the least the govt. will also have to take care of all legal implications that may arise in future.
Earlier the 10323 teachers of Tripura held a meeting on 12th June 2017 at Rabindra Bhavan and decided to submit a deputation to the Director, Education Department.
On May 7, 2014, the Tripura high court, in response to 58 petitions, terminated the services of these teachers recruited by the state government in 2010 and 2013 as they were appointed by a policy not compliant with the obligatory qualifications mandated by the Right to Education Act, 2009.
The high court pointed out that the state government did not follow the National Council for Teachers Education (NCTE) guidelines in 2001 while recruiting them. However, with the Right to Education Act coming into play in 2009, the court said it should have recruited teachers as per the norms of the Act. The court asked the state government to formulate a fresh process of recruitment as mandated by the Act. While 1,100 of the teachers recruited were postgraduates, 4,617 were graduates and 4,606 were undergraduates.
Though the Manik Sarkar government revised the existing recruitment policy in January 2014 – before the high court order was delivered – it filed a special leave petition (SLP) in the Supreme Court in response to the high court order to protect the jobs of those teachers already appointed under the old policy. It also reportedly wrote to the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRC) seeking the relaxation of rules for them.
Two other SLPs were also filed in the apex court in response to the high court order – one by those teachers set to lose their jobs, and the other by some who would be benefitted by the order.On December 8, 2014, a division bench of the Supreme Court, comprising Justice J.S. Khehar and Justice Arun Mishra, stayed the Tripura high court order, thus allowing the teachers to continue in their jobs till further orders.
However, giving its final judgement on March 29, the apex court upheld the high court order but allowed the affected teachers to continue at their posts till December 31. It asked the state government to initiate a fresh recruitment policy through the Teachers Eligibility Test as prescribed under the Right to Education Act by May 31 and complete it by December 31.