Teachers protest in city to remind CM, Education dept of unfulfilled promise

SHILLONG, Jan 17: Miffed over the empty promises doled out by the state government, four members of the Federation of All School Teachers of Meghalaya (FASTOM) agitated in front of the Main Secretariat on Monday, terming their move as an attempt to remind the government to call them for talks to discuss their pending demands, primary among which is upgradation of existing government-aided (adhoc) schools to the deficit pattern.
The four members of FASTOM led by their president, Kenneth Shadap staged the protest from 11am till 4pm. The protest will continue till January 21, they said.
“We have been betrayed since 2018. Therefore, we have no other option but to agitate,” Shadap said, recalling that Chief Minister, Conrad K Sangma had in September last year assured them that the government will upgrade government-aided schools into the deficit pattern.
The assurance was made in the presence of the Director of School Education and Literacy, Shadap added.
The FASTOM president also recalled that when they had gone to meet the Director to inquire about the status of the CM’s commitment the official had assured that the department will need two weeks to complete the exercise.
“There has been no progress so far. The CM’s commitment remains unfulfilled,” he said.
Reacting to the protests by the teachers, Education Minister Lahkmen Rymbui said the state government is alive to their demands. “I have said time and again that it is not easy for the government to fulfill their demands. But the process is on. However, I cannot assure that it will be done as per their wish. Whatever decision is to be taken will be done in due course of time,” Rymbui said.
“We are always ready to meet the teachers. I have met them on multiple occasions and even the CM has met them. The teachers need to understand that decisions cannot be taken overnight,” Rymbui said, while adding that the teachers should understand the financial implications behind their demand.

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