The indefinite hunger strike of the teachers of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) demanding regularization of their jobs entered the fifth day today. "The jobs of SSA teachers were regularized in different states of the country, but despite our repeated memoranda to the government our jobs were not regularized. "So we have decided to continue our agitation until our demands are met", Secretary of the Tripura SSA teachers Welfare Asssociation, Bastab Debbarma told reporters. He said 38 teachers had participated in the fast and more than 300 teachers are remaining present near the ground of agitation here.
The state Education Minister Tapan Chakraborty has appealed to the agitating teachers to withdraw their strike on the plea that the Left Front Government was concerned about their problems.
"The SSA teachers are getting their salaries and facilities at par with the regular teachers of the state government and we have decided to introduce Employees Provident Fund (EPF) within short time," Chakraborty told reporters. He said, Lok Sabha M P from Tripura, Jiten Chowdhury raised the issue in Parliament and requested the central government to regularize their jobs, but the central government remained silent on the issue.
There are 5,200 SSA teachers in the state. Meanwhile, the state BJP president Biplab Deb and Tripura Pradesh Congress president, Birajit Sinha visited the site of agitating teachers and expressed their sympathy to the teachers. Deb alleged that the state government was deliberately depriving the SSA teachers despite getting full funding from the central government. He assured them that their jobs would be regularized if the BJP was voted to power in the next assembly elections scheduled to be held in next February.(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)