Education Minister assures lady teachers on deputation they will not be sent back

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Zubair Qureshi

A delegation of the teachers working in Islamabad’s schools under wedlock policy recently met Federal Minister for Education & Professional Training Shafqat Mehmood and conveyed to him their concerns over the recommendations of a three-member committee that has proposed to send all those lady teachers who have exhausted more than eight years period back to their provinces, AJK and GB.

In the meeting, the lady teachers brought to the notice of the minister that the FDE had written to their parent departments to issue permanent No Objection Certificate (NOC) which they duly submitted and now in case they are repatriated, their parent education departments would not accept them.

The delegation comprised 12 senior lady teachers who represented their 200 colleagues working on deputation under wedlock policy in the FDE’s 400 schools for the last many years.

They also informed the minister that the three-member committee didn’t keep their grievances in mind while recommending their repatriation despite the fact the federal government had a 10pc annual absorption policy and in the past more than forty teachers have been absorbed as well.

If our colleagues could be absorbed on permanent basis, why our cases cannot be considered for the same, asked they? The minister patiently listened to them and assured he would look into the matter as it was the stated policy of the government not to disturb the teachers.

The Education Minister during the teachers’ protest in December last year had also made a solemn commitment to give a one-time absorption to all the lady teachers under wedlock policy and in the meeting with them, too, he reiterated his promise.

Those lady teachers who have not yet got an NOC from their provincial departments, will be given time to get the NOC and then they will also be absorbed.

For that purpose, the FDE will write to their parent departments, a senior official of the Education Ministry later told Pakistan Observer on condition of anonymity.

In 2015, former DG FDE Farida Yasmin vide letter number (F.9-14/2015/FDE, 20-05-2015) had also recommended to the then Secretary of the Capital Administration & Development Division (CA&DD)to permanently absorb the deputationist teachers MT (BS-09), EST (BS-14) and TUGT (BS-14) in the FDE after their completion of five-year term and who fall under the wedlock policy and be exempted from repatriation under rule 20-A .

From time to time, the FDE extended the deputation period of teachers after they provided the NOCs from their parent departments and, at the same time, the FDE asked the parent departments of several teachers — who had completed the five-year term— to provide NOCs for their permanent absorption.

Interestingly, after several deputationist teachers brought the NOCs, the FDE refused to induct them under one pretext or the other while absorbing some teachers who were well connected with the officials.

These teachers belong to all the four provinces, Azad Jammu & Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan (GB).

They have forfeited their seniority only for the sake of living with their husbands and families.

Their children are enrolled at the local schools, colleges and universities in Islamabad and returning to their parent department will cause a huge inconvenience for them.

Some of them are widowed and have brought their parents to Islamabad.
For them too, going back is not an option.

They appealed to the education minister to resolve the matter once for all by announcing a one-time absorption for these 200 teachers who are giving their best in terms of teaching and service.

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