Andhra Pradesh : Report on a 42 day strike by guest teachers

March 12, 2013

Guest teachers of Andhra Pradesh, working 14 hours a day, were on indefinite strike for 42 days

received from Parag (Krantikari Naujawan Sabha)

1173 contract teachers whose designation is ‘Guest lecturers and teachers’ of AP Girijan Gurukula Pathashala (AP Tribal Welfare Residential Educational Institutional Society, a 100% Government funded society) were on hunger strike for around 42 days demanding job permanence and dignity at workplace at Indira Park in Hyderabad City. As per the last report the strike has been withdrawn upon request from the authority as the examinations are coming, however a concrete settlement is yet to be reached. When contacted one of their members Kondra Rajendra, said that they will continue the move if their demands are not met. According to the teachers, they are 1173 in total and have been working at those schools from 1999. These teachers have to take classes right from 7-30 am in the morning to 10 pm at night, which includes study hours of students in the hostels. The teachers have completed B.Ed. with bachelor or master degree as per requirement of the posts. Yet they are paid 7500 per month, whereas the salary for permanent teachers in the state is around 25000 per month.

3 months back, the teachers went on a strike and the strike was withdrawn after 18 days when they were given a promise at the settlement meeting in presence of the Chief Minister of the state, that their demands will be fulfilled. But the promise was not fulfilled. They went to the Tribal Education Minister of the state but he also turned a deaf ear to them. The teachers have formed an independent union GLATA, and from 23rd January these teachers are sitting at indefinite strike at Indira place for their demand, but no one is listening to them. Meanwhile on 28th February the society authority has put up a circular denoting termination of all the teachers.

The menace of contractualisation is not only for these teachers. Just beside these teachers, some health worker are sitting in Indira place, 1781 of whom have been terminated from their jobs, due to some dispute in the government recruitment process and subsequent order of court to terminate them. These people held the post of Multipurpose Health Assistants (Male), and they used to execute all government programs like Immunisation, Malaria control, Epidemic control, Pulse Polio programme and others through Primary Health Centers. They have been on a sit-in-demonstration from 12th July, 2012, after their termination and according to them no established Trade Union or NGO’s have come forward regarding their demand. They were also on a ‘Dharna’ in front of Director of Health, Andhra Pradesh, where 30 of them were arrested. They also conveyed their problem to Gulam Nabi Azad, but no result yielded. They are still sitting in front of the Indira Place.