Kathmandu, October 26
The Ministry of Education has called the agitating temporary teachers for talks tomorrow.
Temporary teachers have been staging relay hunger strike for the eighth day today at Maitighar putting forth a three-point demand.
Dr Hari Lamsal, spokesperson, MoEd, said, “We have invited the agitating teachers for talks tomorrow. We hope the teachers will accept our offer for talks and discuss their issues.”
Lamsal also said that the ministry was always positive towards their demands but it would not be possible to address all of their demands at once.
“The teachers have sought amendment to the Education Act, which is beyond our capacity. Therefore, we would urge the teachers to exercise patience,” he added.
After receiving a call from the education ministry for talks, temporary teachers are happy and excited.
Nirendra Kunwar, president, Temporary Teachers Struggle Central Committee, said they were very happy that the ministry finally called them for talks. “We will definitely go for talks tomorrow to put forth our demands and seek commitment from government to fulfill our demands. We are very hopeful that the ministry will positively respond to our demands,” he added.
However, Kunwar said that they would continue their relay hunger strike. “If the dialogue between temporary teachers and ministry officials yields positive results, we will end our protest programmes. If not, we will continue our protests.”
The agitating teachers have been demanding that all temporary teachers be given opportunity to fight for permanent status. Similarly, they have also demanded that the government add their total years of service as temporary teachers for retirement benefits when they get permanent status.
As all temporary teachers may not get permanent status, they have demanded gratuity with medical treatment facilities for such teachers.
The temporary teachers have been opposing the eighth amendment to the Education Act, stating that the act was amended without implementing the provision made in the seventh amendment.
In the seventh amendment of the Education Act, the government had made the provision of providing gratuity to temporary teachers who failed to get permanent status.
The talks will be held in the presence of representatives from Confederation of Nepalese Teachers.
A version of this article appears in print on October 27, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.