OPINION

SSA Teachers – Defamations and Biases

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BY: Mushtaq Hurra

Bridges and buildings may collapse if engineers hit the roads, people may die if doctors leave the hospitals but nations disintegrate, people bewildered and its future bleak if teachers lockdown the schools. The stalemate between the government and the SSA teachers is taking ugly turns with the latter resorting to severe means of protests like pen down strikes, Secretariat gherao and even closure of educational institutions. During this entire ruckus, many pseudo intellectuals including some journalists, have jumped into the fray.

Very recently a premier newspaper of our state carried concocted story about SSA teachers by terming them as illegitimate and illegal appointees.

Hundreds of illegal appointments in a department is palatable to some extent in our part of the globe but calling 35000 appointments illegal that too with all the legal documents like formal orders, is mere exaggeration and bias.

No doubt, 1 or 2% recruitments, in our state are politically motivated but such acts are not confined to this particular scheme only. We have witnessed fraudulent and scandalous appointment in other departments as well. So, humiliating the whole SSA community, is a vivid proof of crooked mentality.

The story has put these teachers to absolute mental trauma and severe insult as the newspaper has very wide circulation in the state.

If the jurnos can prove these appointments illegal and unfair, then we all must resign on moral grounds as teachers are always morally upright. But, if it is just a shot in the dark, then the jurno and the editor of the newspaper must apologize publicly to SSA teachers for hurting their sentiments and self-esteem. I request my fraternity to move to the judiciary and get a libel suit registered against the dou for the defamatory and slanderous acts against us.

Since the publishing of this story, we feel guilty of being teachers. We hardly dare to venture out and attend public gatherings. This news item has put our credibility at stake. We have a valid reason to ask the duo a simple question- If these appointments were against the prescribed norms, then why didn’t you utter a single word for all these years? Why did you keep silent?

Your story is not a mere news item rather a lethal attack on a community who are respected by people and admired by students.

You should have doused the fire of confrontation between the two stakeholders but unfortunately you are fueling the fire. You should have persuaded the government to fullfil the genuine demands of SSA teachers as the confrontations lead to the closure of schools which is sure to jeopardize the careers of poor children, and it is extremely dangerous for our collective identity as a nation.

If you are true well wishers of this nation, then why don’t you criticize the government for such cheap means of recruitment where a post-graduate is paid a paltry sum of rupees 1500 or 3000 a month. Is it enough to attract the fertile brains to ensure quality education? Such mockery is possible in a state of affairs where personal interests are prioritized over collective achievements. Why should you expect a young man to join a contractual job at rupees 50 a day when he is offered a lucrative career in corporate world.

Dear jurno, it is not a contractual job. A NET, SET qualified post-graduate of the conflict zone attracted by  the bright days at the end of the probationary period of five years. He can afford to sacrifice his aspirations for good days ahead which is clearly mentioned in the scheme.

The Individual order of SSA teachers clearly declares an Ret as a general line teacher after the completion of five years of satisfactory service. Thus, your allegation is a bizarre and false perception or a result of some personal grudge against the community.

Since this government has miserably failed to fulfill the legitimate demands of SSA teachers for years together and these teachers are time and again forced to leave the schools and hit the roads for the fulfillment of their genuine demands which is absolutely unacceptable in a democratic set-up.

Any nation’s development is subject to its educational standards. Educationally backward nations fell prey to the yokes of slavery and ignorance very easily. And thus, I won’t exaggerate to call it a conspiracy to lower our academic standards in the garb of SSA salaries.

Delay in salaries has put the families of these teachers to acute crisis. Many have fallen prey to the clutches of moneylenders and are reeling under the heavy burden of debts. Is it fair for a regime to disown its employees in such a deceitful way? This step-motherly treatment has increased the gulf between teachers and the government with the former threatening to go for indefinite strike. These lockouts and strikes are sure to create chaos among children and these snags will reflect in our collective tomorrow.

For a sound nation and efficient future generations, education is the only force to liberate us from the yokes of mental slavery and superstition. So, there must not be any compromise with it.

The writer teaches at Middle school Poshwari.

 

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