Shikshakarmis in Chhattisgarh demand to be regularised

Shikshakarmis in Chhattisgarh demand to be regularised

‘Shikshakarmi’, the term used for contract teachers to fill the gap of teachers in government schools, was introduced by the Digivijaya Singh government in undivided Madhya Pradesh.

In 2000, when Chhattisgarh was separated as a state, the Congress government in the state continued the same policy. Recruitment was being carried out at Panchayat level, so they were also known as ‘Panchayat teachers’.

Later when the BJP came to power, it did gradation by classifying teachers as primary, high school and higher secondary as per their demand, and wages were also fixed based on it. They had been raising the demand of merger with the school education department and wages equivalent to school teachers.

Finally, just before the elections, the BJP budged and commenced the merger process, but fixed a deadline of above 10 years and then eight years of service. This led to resentment among the teachers.

Now with the Congress back in power, and a shikshakarmi Chandradev Rai from Bhilaigarh, being elected as an MLA, shikshakarmis in the state are demanding that he be made the school education minister.

They have also demanded that the eight-year of service condition be removed and all appointed shikshakarmis be made regular teachers. It would benefit around 1.5 lakh personnel, they said.