While AAP and LG have consented for equal pay and status for Kashmiri migrant teachers, approval hangs on from UPSC

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The AAP government has requested the UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) to re-consider their decision of its cabinet giving nod for regularisation of Kashmiri migrant teachers, who fled their state.

Representational Image (EENADUINDIA)

These teachers are working in municipal and government schools on contractual basis for past 13 years. A written communication was sent to the UPSC following the Delhi High Court’s order to the government, to take a speedy decision on regularising Kashmiri migrant teachers.

The Delhi government additional standing counsel Santosh Kumar Tripathi said that the copy of communication to the UPSC was to be placed before the court on September 15. However, since the bench did not assemble on that day, it will be placed before the court on October 13, the next date of hearing, he said.

The Delhi government’s Directorate of Education (DoE) on August 21 had issued a letter to the UPSC seeking relaxation in the provisions on age limit and method of recruitment. The Delhi government also informed UPSC that after the cabinet’s decision on July 12, they had obtained the LG’s approval and was awaiting its concurrence.

An assistant director in the Education Department said in the letter that in compliance of cabinet’s July 12 decision and approval of the LG, he was sending a proposal to UPSC for its concurrence for one time relaxation in recruitment rules for the posts of post graduate teachers, trained graduate teacher, librarian and music teacher for appointment of Kashmiri migrant teachers working on contract basis.

The letter also stated that the relaxation was sought in the provisions relating to age limit and method of recruitment. A bench of justices S Ravindra Bhat and Deepa Sharma had issued the direction post the Delhi government’s intimation that its Cabinet had approved regularisation of the migrant teachers, numbering around 180, while the consent of LG Anil Baijal was awaited.

The bench was hearing the government’s appeal challenging a 2015 order of a single judge of the high court directing regularisation of the Kashmiri migrant teachers employed on contractual basis in government and municipal schools in the national capital since 1994.

The 2015 order of the high court had come on the plea of the migrant teachers who were seeking equal pay and work benefits as well as regularisation of jobs, after their representations to the Centre and the Delhi government had failed to get them any relief.

While issuing the direction, the single judge had pointed out that the difference in pay was substantial. The court also commented that according to 2015 figures, regular PGT and TGTs in government schools were getting Rs. 70,401 and Rs. 60,496, respectively, while the migrant teachers in these categories were getting Rs. 29,187 and Rs. 28,773. In municipal schools, while regular teachers in 2015 were getting Rs. 49,900, the migrant teachers were being paid a mere Rs. 25,000, it had said.

The court had also noted that while regular teachers enjoyed allowances and benefits like 10 per cent of school fees for child education, medical benefit for the entire family, bonus of Rs. 3,454 per year, LTC of Rs 1,50,000 above once every four years and two months summer vacation, the Kashmiri migrant teachers were deprived of these, by only allowing them eight days of casual leave. Effectively, the decision of UPSC is awaited to amend the disparity in pay and status for all Kashmiri migrant teachers.

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