In a decision which would benefit over 55,000 Rehbar-e-Taleem (ReT) teachers in Jammu and Kashmir, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today announced service benefits and transfer policy for them, meeting their long- pending demand. "With great pleasure, I am thankful to the Deputy Chief Minister (Tara Chand, who is also school education minister) and my cabinet colleagues, who gave me this opportunity to announce that your long-pending demands have been accepted today," Omar said at a gathering of ReTs here.
The ReT scheme, under which qualified people of an area were appointed teachers in their respective areas, was started by the previous National Conference (NC) government in 2000 with an intention to lower the rate of unemployment and improve the literacy rate in the state.
A teacher under this scheme was paid a fixed stipend of Rs 1,500 per month for the first five years of his service after which the services were regularised. However, the five years of service were not included in their service records and there was no transfer policy for them. "We discussed this in the cabinet that our ReT teachers, who play an important role, have two main demands and government should think on them. We recruit you for a school and then even after regularisation, we tell you that you cannot be transferred from this school. There are many problems in this, especially with lady teachers who have to stay at the place where they have been recruited even after marriage. "It leads to many mental and social difficulties for them. And a vested interest may get developed if a person is placed at a particular place for a long," Omar said.
He said the government was of the view that there was nothing wrong in these demands. "When there is no difference between an ReT teacher and a regular teacher after regularisation, why have a difference on this (transfer)? And when you work right from the day you are recruited, then why determine your seniority from the day you are regularised? So, when we thought on these, we felt what you demand is nothing wrong. Not accepting these demands would have been a grave injustice to you," he said.