Meghalaya teachers on strike

Over 14,000 school and college teachers in Meghalaya today observed a 'mass casual leave' affecting students in 4047 schools of 11 districts to protest against the "attitude of the state government" towards them.

The mass casual leave is part of the ongoing first phase of agitation by the teachers from the across the state under the banner of the Joint Action Committee of All Teacher Associations of Meghalaya (JACATAM).

" The adamant attitude of the state government has compelled the teachers to take such steps," JACATAM Chairman E D Nongsiang told reporters here.

According to him, over 14,000 teachers right from primary level to college level are participating in the protest.

The state government has refused to extend talks with the teachers on various issues but in a statement requested them to refrain from any action and said that it would examine only those issues which are considered 'reasonable'.

According to him, the teachers demanded that the talks and dialogue if initiated should be 'unconditional'.

Today's agitation will be followed by sit - in - demonstrations (dharnas) on September 4 besides boycotting the Teacher's Day Celebrations by holding a protest rally to be held here on September 5.

Meanwhile, the teachers from across the state under the banner of the Joint Action Committee of All Teachers' Associations of Meghalaya (JACATAM) has pledged to intensify their agitation if the government remains indifferent towards them.

The JACATAM is a conglomeration of 10 teachers associations in Meghalaya from the ad hoc to college level.

The JACATAM's main issues are provincialization of services of the teachers, education policy, uniform salary, Meghalaya Board Of Secondary Education (MBOSE) related issues besides others.