Light at the end of the tunnel for 10,323 but conspiracy on to sabotage prospect despite CM’s goodwill and compassion
By Our Correspondent
Agartala, November 24, 2022
Despite the chief minister Dr Manik Saha’s avowed compassion for the retrenched 10,323 teachers and attempt to resolve the longstanding problem, a creeping conspiracy , presumably hatched at the political level, is on to sabotage the very constructive initiative. At a time when light flickers at the end of the dark tunnel to which the retrenched teachers had been condemned by ‘miscarriage of justice’ and misinterpretation of court orders, a politically motivated faction of the Joint Movement Committee (JMC) and their advocate Chandra Sekhar Sinha consciously tried to subvert the move of the government to reinstate the hapless teachers terminated illegally.
According to sources among retrenched teachers the crucial meeting between the chief minister Dr Manik Saha, law secretary Biswajit Palit, advocate general S.S.De, Home and Education secretary Sharabindu Chowdhuruy for the government and Justice (retired) A.B.Paul and advocate Chandra Sekhar Sinha. Sources said that Chandra Sekhar Sinha had been deputed by the politically motivated faction of the JMC to sabotage the process with baseless and uninformed arguments. At the beginning of the meeting that began at 5-30 PM the justice (retired) A.B.Paul who had been requested to attend the meeting as jurist by the government explained in detail the correct interpretation and implication of the high court order of May 7 2014, of the supreme court order of March 29 2017 and another high court order of October 3 2019. He proved by cogent argument and references to the relevant portions of the judgments that not all the jobs of the teachers had been terminated by court but only jobs of 45 primary teachers had been terminated on ground of faulty recruitment rules.
The chief minister Dr Manik Saha and all the officials including the law secretary and the advocate general were convinced by the sound arguments as well as facts cited by justice (retired) A.B.Paul. But advocate Chandra Sekhar Sinha representing the politically motivated section of JMC made vain attempts to rebut the arguments put forward by justice (retired) A.B.Paul though he had to fall silent when the Justice had countered him on points of facts in judicial orders. Even though the chief minister and officials were convinced of the position decision was taken for a third round of discussion as Dr Saha had an important meeting to attend. Interestingly Justice A.B.Paul asked whether his presence in the third round was necessary since he had explained the entire issue but Chandra Sekhar Sinha who apparently holds a political brief readily said that he will attend the third round of discussion (!), presumably to make a last-ditch attempt to sabotage the reinstatement of the helpless teachers.
That the chief minister Dr Manik Saha has taken a compassionate and rational stand over contentious issue, was proved by his speech in a meeting of the Bardowali ‘Mandal’ on the day of the meeting . Dr Saha said that the retrenched 10,323 teachers had been victims of injustice which needed to be corrected , indicating clearly that he is moving in the direction of correcting the error made earlier. Already 145 retrenched teachers have either died of diseases or committed suicide.