SHILLONG: Failing to get any ‘concrete response’ from the Education Minister, Prof RC Laloo the Joint Action Committee of All Teachers’ Associations of Meghalaya (JACATAM) has now set a September 23 deadline for Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma to meet the committee.
The decision was taken following a meeting of the JACATAM held here on Friday.
Informing that the agitating teachers would resume classes from Monday, JACATAM chairman, ED Nongsiang said, “If the Chief Minister does not invite us for discussions, we would take out a procession to Secretariat on September 24 and will be compelled to go for an indefinite strike thereafter.”
The JACTAM has also shot off a letter to Dr Sangma to meet them before September 24.
Nongsiang also said that the Committee would not meet Prof Laloo unless directed by the Chief Minister.
It may be mentioned that the teachers have been agitating since August 21 seeking an audience with Prof Laloo to discuss reforms in the Meghalaya Board of School Education (MBoSE), regular payment of salaries to teachers and provincialisation of schools.
The teachers claimed that they have sought in writing for an appointment with the Deputy Chief Minister thrice – in May 2012, in May 2013 and on August 6, 2013 – to discuss various issues related to education including teachers’ problems but they never got the opportunity to meet him till date.
“The Deputy Chief Minister may say that the door is always open to meet him but he should fix a date and time for an appointment either at his residence or Secretariat. How can you say that the door is open for discussion when it is practically closed?” the teachers’ asked. Admitting that their ongoing agitation is affecting the students, the JACATAM urged the students to bear with them as their agitation is for the overall interest of education in the State.