Police flexes muscle against protesting ReTs, dozens detained

Police flexes muscle against protesting ReTs, dozens detained

Javid Ali

SRINAGAR: Dozens of Rehber-e-Taleem teachers (ReTs) on Monday were detained and scores received injuries after police used force to scuttle their protest march against government’s decision to conduct a screening test for them.
Hundreds of these teachers came on the roads here and tried to march towards the Civil Secretariat demanding revocation of the controversial proposal that aims conducting of a screening test of all the ReTs appointed from past more than one decade.
“We were selected on merit and our documents were verified at the time of appointment. We are against the test, it should have been done at the time of selection,” said Farooq Ahmad Tantray, chairman of the Teachers Forum. There are 7, 7000 teachers who have been asked to go through the screening. “We worked for Rs 1500 per month for 5 years and now, after 15 years, they are asking us to write a test to qualify, I have few years to retire,” said Parvaiz Ahmad Baba, one of the protesters.
Nearly half a dozen protestors were injured in the police action, officials said, adding, one of the severely injured Sikh teacher was rushed to hospital for treatment.
Some agitating teachers also resorted to stone-pelting, resulting in brief clashes with police, following which the normal activities in the commercial hub was affected.
Over three dozen teachers were detained and taken to different police stations in the city, they said.
Teachers have called for a three-day strike, beginning Wednesday, as a mark of protest against the government decision to make screening test compulsory for Rehbar-e-Taleem (ReT) teachers who have obtained their degrees from outside study centres or through distance mode.
The government decision comes following the High Court order issued on May 14 after an ReT applicant failed to write an essay on cow.
The work in all government-run schools was affected due to the strike, the officials said.
—With inputs from PTI

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