Teacher union chiefs pulled up for not taking classes

The state has decided to act tough against teachers who skip teaching duties on the pretext of running trade unions.
Teacher union chiefs pulled up for not taking classesThe directions in this regard were issued by Shah Faesal, Director, School Education, Kashmir, as complaints were being received that some members of various teacher forums and associations did not attend to their routine duties on the pretext that the government had exempted them from the same.
There had been frequent complaints against the teacher union forums and there were allegations that union leaders interfered in the administrative activities and did not attend their duties regularly.
“Teaching is a very sacred profession and a department which deals with the next generation cannot be allowed to be hijacked by elements who take salary for teaching but instead avoid duties under the pretext of trade unionism. Employee associations are very important institutions and no one can be allowed to misuse them for evading official responsibilities and to make personal fortunes,” an order issued by the director read.
The order also stated that under the existing departmental guidelines regarding teacher associations/ forum, it was no¬where mentioned that they shall be exempted from routine class work and that they did not need to attend school.
The order also quoted a Supreme Court ruling which said that employee union/ forum leaders were also subjected to conduct rules in the same manner as any other employee, and they could be transferred in the interest of administration as also that no union activities could be done on government premises without proper permission.
“Therefore, it is hereby reiterated that all members/ office-bearers, including the chairmen, of teacher associations/ forums are subject to same disciplinary control, CSR and conduct rules as any other government employee and no special exemptions from teaching duties has been given to them, except if they chose to remain absent under leave duly sanctioned. School/ office premises can be allowed to be used for activities of registered and recognised associations only after a written permission is taken and once the class work has been completed,” the order read.
It also adds that all officials shall ensure that during the active academic session, any indiscipline in the name of association be strictly dealt under employee conduct rules and other regulations in vogue, while at the same time, giving due cooperation to registered and recognised associations that were genuinely working for the welfare of teaching fraternity.
Abdul Qayoom Wani, Jammu Kashmir Teachers Forum (JKTF) chairman and president of Employees Joint Action Committee (EJAC), said it was wrong that teachers associated with trade unions were skipping their duties.
“It is our constitutional right to have trade union body. No one can stop us from it, but at the same time, we don’t skip teaching duties,” Wani added.

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