No respite for school teachers deputed for poll-related work
HOSHIARPUR : School teachers, working as booth-level officers (BLOS) to carry out poll-related duties, have been demanding exemption from the mostly under-rewarded job, but instead they are being burdened with the onerous task of feeding the entire data online with the help of computer teachers.
In a circular to district education officers and other heads of department, the sub-divisional officer of SAS Nagar has even suggested that, if need be, the staff be exempted from their regular work to enable them complete the online work by February 10.
If teachers are kept off educational work, students are bound to suffer as annual exams are not very far. Teachers are being called to attend special training programmes to learn the nuances of the online uploading work they are not acquainted with.
As per information gathered under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, 80 to 90% teaching staff deployed on poll duty in various districts is from the teacher cadre and this is being done without any written instructions from the Election Commission of India or the state’s chief election officer.
Dcs-cum-district election officers (DEOS) were requested to provide the copy of instructions on the basis of which government employees were deputed on election duty. Replies from the DEOS mention that there were neither any instructions on the percentage of staff of different departments to be put on pol duty.