Striking Meghalaya teachers call off agitation

Last Updated: Tue, Oct 19, 2010 14:50 hrs

Shillong, Oct 19 (IANS) Over 3,000 school teachers in Meghalaya, who went on an indefinite strike demanding payment of arrears, Tuesday called off their protest after the state government assured that their dues will be cleared before Christmas.

The teachers under the banner of Khasi Jaintia Deficit School Teachers' Association (KJDSTA) and Garo Hills Deficit School Teachers' and Employees Association (GHDSTEA) began their protest Oct 4, affecting over 50,000 students.

The teachers demanded their 40 percent arrears as recommended by the Meghalaya Fourth Pay Commission. The state government had released the 40 percent arrears to government employees in October last year.

'We have decided to call off our strike after the government issued a notification, saying the state government was in a position to release the 40 percent arrears to the school teachers before Christmas,' KJDSTA chief E.D. Nongsiang told IANS.

Chief Minister Mukul Sangma had said the arrears to the teachers will be cleared before Christmas as the government has been able to mobilise funds from various resources.

The cash-strapped state government requires Rs.52 crore to clear the arrears of the teachers.

'If the government fails to disburse our arrears before Christmas, we will launch a massive agitation across the state,' Nongsiang said.