NEW DELHI: Aam Aadmi Party’s Punjab Government has shown the mirror to other governments hiring contract workers by getting rid of government jobs across the country. AAP National Convenor and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal informed that 8,736 contractual teachers have been regularised in Punjab as he vouched for the nationwide implementation of the practice on Saturday.
Kejriwal said, “For the first time in India, AAP’s Punjab Government has regularised 8,736 contractual teachers; several thousand contract workers are still in line, we will regularise them soon too. These teachers had lost hope after protesting continuously for 10-15 years; some teachers even crossed the age limit due to protests, they’ve now been given a relaxation. There’s now a trend across India where governments reduce government jobs and hire contract workers.”
“These people promote a notion that permanent workers don’t live up to their duties; this is completely incorrect. We have proven the mettle of permanent workers in Delhi; permanent teachers and doctors in Delhi have been at the helm of our education & healthcare revolution. Contract workers are subjected to constant harassment; it is now time to end this cruelty, Punjab’s waves will soon reach the rest of the country. We have been trying to make guest teachers permanent in Delhi; we introduced a bill in the assembly over it but the Central Government refused to approve it,” he said.
“Delhi is a half-state, we lack a lot of administrative powers, which is why despite trying our best, we have been unable to regularise guest teachers. I appeal to all state governments and the Centre to regularise contract workers just like the Punjab Government. Wherever AAP forms government in India, it will prioritise the regularisation of contract workers and secure their rights,” he added.
Kejriwal lauded his Punjab counterpart for taking the first step towards putting an end to the unfair system of hiring temporary employees on government jobs. He said, “Punjab CM Sardar Bhagwant Mann made a major announcement on the occasion of Teachers Day on September 5th which will have a positive impact on not only Punjab but the country’s economy.
He announced that 8,736 contractual teachers will be regularised. The move is unprecedented in the country, especially in the times when there is a wave in the country to reduce government jobs and not make appointments for the vacant posts. Instead, they are hiring employees on a temporary basis and all their lives get spent as temporary employees. For the first time in the country, AAP’s government under the leadership of Sardar Bhagwant Mann has regularised the 8,736 contractual teachers and made them permanent.”
He talked about the misery of contractual teachers in Punjab and their long struggle to get what they rightfully deserve. Giving the details of sound planning of AAP governments to give them permanent jobs, Kejriwal said “There are several thousand contractual employees in various departments and the AAP Government under the leadership Sardar Bhagwant Mann is working tirelessly to regularise all of them.
“The process is taking some time because we are taking a proper legal recourse so that the move is completely airtight if someone challenges it in a court of law. We are not regularising them just for the sake of it and it should not be the case that they get a set back if the matters gets to a court. Many of these contractual employees raised the demand to regularise them more than a decade ago. They have been protesting for the past 10-15 years. They were extremely stressed and fed with constant protesting. In this entire mess, a lot of them got over aged. The AAP government in Punjab is giving age relaxation to them as well,” he said.
Kejriwal busted the false narrative of incompetence of permanent government employees to cover up the mismanagement in giving employment to deserving talents in the country. He added, “I again reiterate that it is a big move in the entire country. Several state governments and the Central Government are systematically destroying government jobs one after the other.
“When the economy of the country is expanding and states are also witnessing economic growth, it should have led to an increase in government jobs. How can they get reduced? There is a vicious pattern in the country to end full-time government jobs and to replace them with contractual employees,” he added.
“A large number of permanent government jobs were kept vacant and instead, employees were hired on a temporary basis. It is being said that permanent employees do not perform any work and they are slackers. This is a dangerous misconception. We have busted this myth in Delhi. The education revolution in Delhi is a result of succinct efforts of permanent teachers as well as guest teachers. There are around 60 thousand teachers in government schools of Delhi,” he said.
“Previously, these teachers were wrongfully targeted. It was being said that no classes take place in government schools. Teachers come to school only to sit under the tree. Female teachers only come to school to knit sweaters. The same teachers have brought a revolution in education. Similarly, the same government doctors, nurses and hospital staff have done a wonderful job in government hospitals and mohalla clinics,” he added.
AAP National laid down the vision of his party to harness the full potential of employees by giving them permanent jobs. He said, “It is completely illogical to say that permanent employees do not do any work. We have transformed the lives of citizens with the help of those same permanent employees. Contractual employees kept on a temporary basis remain at the bottom of the hierarchy. They remain poor and are exploited by everyone. The time to end this exploitation has come. The wave which has emerged out of Punjab will spread in the entire country,” he said.
“We tried to do the same in Delhi. We introduced a bill in the Assembly to regularise the guest teachers. However, the Central Government did not give the assent to the bill. As you all know that Delhi is not a full state. The democratically elected government does not have a lot of powers. Despite our best intentions, we could not make this happen. But a light has been lit in Punjab and our government has vowed that only permanent employees will be hired for government jobs. We should end the system of temporary employees which is only created to exploit them. And soon it will brighten the entire country,” he added.
“I appeal to other state governments and the Central Government to regularise all their contractual employees to make them permanent. AAP staunchly favours that contractual employees should be regularised in all parts of the country. We will ensure that whenever we will come to power, we will give them permanent jobs. It is their right,” he said.