ISLAMABAD: The daily wagers working in schools and colleges have stepped up their protest against non-payment of salaries for the past four months.
Hundreds of teaching and non-teaching staff have already boycotted their duties since October 5 - World Teaching Day to protest for the release of their salaries unpaid since June this year. The refusal of the finance ministry to allocate supplementary grant in the first quarter of fiscal year resulted in the protest by the employees on October 5.
However, the staff, on Monday, took to the streets and staged a sit-in in front of Federal Directorate of Education to urge the government to release their salaries. As a result of the sit-in, traffic was adversely affected. Additionally, protestors shouted against the exploitative policies of education mangers. Local representatives of various political parties also joined the protesters to express solidarity with them.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar said the teachers have been protesting for the last two years but their salary and regularisation issue remains pending.
The officials always promise the staffers to pay their dues but later turn their backs on them. “The concerned ministers should resign if they cannot resolve the issues,” Umar added. He also announced that the PTI will also join the teachers in their next sit-in.
Later, the protesters held negotiations with the Capital Administration and Development Division Minister (CADD) and Secretary CADD. The officials assured them that their salaries would be released soon and that the staff will be kept informed about the regularization issue.
However, according to a representative of the teachers, Rabia Waheed, the officials always renege on their promises as the administration has been making hollow claims for more than two years now. As a result, the staff decided to continue the strike and they have announced to protest again on Friday at D-Chowk
Published in The Express Tribune, October 18th, 2016.