FAISALABAD: Education Authority Faisalabad Chief Executive Officer Javed Iqbal Chishti has suspended a school teacher, Muhammad Safdar, for issuing a statement in the media regarding teachers’ demands and ordered an inquiry under Punjab Employees Efficiency, Discipline and Accountability Act, 2006.
Muhammad Safdar was a teacher of Government Comprehensive Secondary School Samanabad and the president of Punjab Education Association. He criticized the acts of omission and commission of the District Education Authority (DEA) in the media.
“You have criticized the performance of DEA Faisalabad in a wrongful manner. By issuance of such statement in the media you have committed a serious offence which falls under the domain of “misconduct”, and you are required to proceed under the PEADA Act,” stated the suspension order.
Punjab Educator Association spokesperson said that Safdar had not committed any offence as alleged in the suspension order. He added that adding he issued the statement in the media on the decision taken in the association meeting.
The spokesperson pointed out that the association had merely explained arrears where the education authority had not taken any measures. He added that talking on the improvement and performance of the Education Authority was not an offence.
A spokesperson of the association believed that the action taken by the Education Authority was against the basic right of freedom of expression. He added that such an uncalled action would not bow down the association from fighting for the legitimate rights of the teaching community.
Safdar while talking to the media persons, said that “On one hand, teachers are being victimized on small issues and suspended besides initiating inquiries and on the other hand no action is being taken against those who loot people on the pretext of education”.
He claimed that there were a number of issues pending for years relating to service structure and fringe benefits of teachers while the Education Authority was playing the role of a salient spectator.
He said that even though the CEO announced measures to improve the faulty system of education, attendance of the teachers and enrolments of students etc., no practical steams had been taken thus far.
When contacted, CEO DEA Javed Iqbal Chashti refuted the allegations of the Teachers Association and contended that “action taken against teacher Muhammad Safdar was in line with the laws and rules as he has committed a serious offence.”
The CEO pointed out that as many 4 notices were issued to Safdar to improve the performance, attendance and enrollment of his schools but instead of taking corrective measures, he criticized the DEA.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 15th, 2017.