Pune: As many as 72,000 junior college teachers across Maharashtra have announced a one-day strike on February 2.
The students will be heading towards Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) Board exams from next month, while the practical exams have been scheduled to take place from February 1-18.
The protest has been called because the government has failed to fulfil the demands put forth by teachers since last five years. The list includes 32 demands made by the federation like approval of teachers appointments after 2012, splitting science papers for HSC exam and making Information Technology an aided subject to make it affordable for the students.
Anil Deshmukh, General Secretary of the Junior College Teachers' Federation based in Mumbai, said, "In last five years, the union has put forth their demands before the government several times. However, the government seems to agree with the demands but fails to implement them."
The teachers association have decided that if the demands are delayed further, they will boycott the HSC Board exams.
"It is very sad that the government has been ignoring the simple demands made by the teachers to benefit the students for the last 5 years. Also, the recent decisions taken by the government have been anti-education. Shutting down of 1,314 schools, making an easy path for the private firms to open more schools, disallowing the day school teachers to teach in night schools and many such decisions display the intention of the government in the education sector," said Nihal Kirnalli, educationist and a social activist from Solapur.
"The State needs to get back on pro-education policies rather than anti-education as displayed in the past 3-4 months. The recent decisions will affect around 70,000 students and we cannot afford more than this. It will be a huge loss to the nation," added Kirnalli.