Consider students’ future, return to work: HC to striking teachers

Chennai: Madras High Court judge on Monday requested the striking teachers to consider the future of the students keeping in mind the forthcoming examinations and inform the court whether it is possible for them to return to work today.

Hearing a petition from a teacher challenging his suspension for taking part in the strike, Justice N Kirubakaran disapproved the agitation by the teachers. He said they were not labourers and were in a noble profession. If teachers indulge in agitations what will be fate of the future generations, he asked. He also asked the counsel of associations whether it was right for them to strike just when the annual examinations were nearing.

The Joint Action Council of Teachers Organisations – Government Employees Organisations (JACTO-GEO) have been on the strike since 22 January. They have been pressing their nine-point charter of demands, which includes reverting to the old pension scheme and seeking salary arrears.

The judge also disapproved them for speaking against politicians. Was it right to abuse the government, ministers and high ranking officials, he asked.

He said that two litigations were already pending before the court regarding JACTO-GEO agitation and added it was not correct to pass any orders now. He thus requested the agitating teachers to consider the future of their students keeping in mind the forthcoming examinations and inform the court whether it was possible for them to return to work by today.

NT Bureau