Political Litmus Test for the TET
Diphu, Feb. 21: The Autonomous State Demand Committee today asked Dispur to stop including Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao in the pan-Assam teachers’ eligibility test, as recruitment of schoolteachers lies in the domain of the autonomous councils of the two hill districts.
The party said the state-level examination is a violation of the 1995 memorandum of understanding between New Delhi and the local autonomous councils. It said according to the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution, an autonomous council is the supreme authority for recruitment and transfer of teachers in schools within the council area and the government should not push the local body to accept any candidate selected by the state.
Party general secretary and sitting Karbi Anglong autonomous district council member Jagatsing Engti today threatened to launch an agitation against the state government’s violation of the Sixth Schedule guideline.
“It is a very big conspiracy of the state government to fill up the vacant posts in the education institutions of the district with outsiders. If such an eligibility test is compulsory, it should be conducted by the council itself,” Engti said.
More than 10,000 job aspirants of the hill district appeared in the state-level eligibility test, of which 468 candidates were successful.
According to the ASDC, of the successful candidates, only 7 to 8 per cent are tribal candidates. This means the state-level test minimises the chances of the districts’ indigenous tribal job aspirants, only 30 to 35 of whom are expected to get through.
Karbi Anglong has 1,405 primary schools, with more than 1,700 vacant posts.
“We cannot quote accurate data, as there are legal tangles around 101 posts. We also conducted interviews for 86 posts of primary schoolteachers last year but they are yet to be recruited,” said education department joint secretary J.C. Daulagupu.
The ASDC today came down heavily on the Congress-led local autonomous council in Karbi Anglong for giving a free hand to the state government to violate the Sixth Schedule guidelines and urged the organisation to work in the interest of the people of the hill district.
“We have unemployed youths in our own district. Why should the state government hire candidates from outside?” Engti asked.
The Congress, however, said introduction of teachers’ eligibility test in Karbi Anglong is legitimate, as it is under the Right to Education Act. “They (the Opposition) should oppose if the teachers’ eligibility test was not held in Karbi Anglong. Job aspirants of the district appeared in the examination and those who passed are going to be recruited soon,” said autonomous council executive member (education) Tuliram Ranghang.