Friday, January 9, 2015

Transferred teachers will surrender voter cards if fresh deadline also ignored: STA

GANGTOK, 09 Jan: Sikkim Teachers' Association has given a new deadline to the State government to roll back the recent transfer of teachers failing which the transferred teachers would surrender their voter cards and stay away from any election held in the State until their retirement. The teachers have asked the state government to roll back the transfer of 1063 teachers by 17 January otherwise they will surrender their voter cards to the State Election Commission starting from 19 January and not cast their votes in any of the elections to come until their demands are met.
This was decided in a meeting held today after the earlier deadline given to the state government lapsed on 08 January and the subsequent meeting with the HRD Secretary did not bear any fruit.

Addressing a press conference held at Press Club of Sikkim today, Chewang Norbu Bhutia [general secretary, STA] informed that the memorandum submitted by the association to the Principal Secretary, Human Resource Development Department [HRDD] on 29 December, 2014 regarding the teacher transfers had requested that the transfer orders be withheld till 08 January but there was no response from the department. Moreover, when the members of the association met with the HRD Secretary on 08 January, they were told that the teachers will have to follow the transfer orders issued by the department as it had already been issued by the department and there would be no roll back issued, the Secretary had stated.
Speaking to the media, the STA president, Lezom Bhutia informed that when they had gone to meet with the HRD Secretary yesterday, he could not give them a concrete and actual reason for the transfers, wherein he added that they were advised to make a list of problems and demands which would be looked into by the department on priority basis.
“We are not against the transfers nor are we saying we will not join our duties, but it is just that we want a proper transfer policy of the department approved by the state government which can be followed,” he added.
There was nothing conclusive in the talks held between the association and the department and when questioned about the transfer policy.
The general secretary further added that this time their movement would be on social issues concerning the teachers. “We will begin with the issue of transfer of teachers during elections to their desired places by their MLAs and then the same teachers are victimized as soon as the elections are over. Why are we always made the scapegoats?,” he questioned and added that because of this they would be surrendering their voters cards so that they are not always politically victimized.
“We also appeal to other teachers and people who have been made political victims to join in our movement. We are not taking this decision as an association but as responsible teachers and people of the state to help us in our endeavor,” he added.

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