Teachers to continue protest despite cabinet approval

KARACHI:January 01:At long last the Sindh Cabinet approved the regularisation of National Testing Service (NTS)-qualified contract teachers who have been protesting since last week.
The regularisation will be carried out through a legislative act and simultaneous presentation of a comprehensive education reform bill in the assembly to improve the overall public sector education system.

However, the teachers were not satisfied by the cabinet’s attempt to pacify them and decided to continue their protest till their other demands were also met. The teachers said they are celebrating 2017 as a ‘Black Year’.

According to the All Sindh Primacy Teachers Association (ASPTA), their demands are the regularisation of Sindh University teachers who are still working on contract for more than six years and promotion of teachers to Grade-16. “The Institute of Business Administration and Sindh University conducted the test from 2008 to 2011 and appointed 14,000 teachers on a contract basis. The assembly passed the law in 2012 and gave permanent jobs only to the IBA-qualified teachers, ignoring those who passed the test conducted by Sindh University. We are demanding equal justice for all teachers, because they have also passed the test and gotten their jobs on merit,” said ASPTA President Shafi Mohammad Sathio. He added that even teachers who have completed 25 years in service have not been promoted.

“After our last year’s protest, the government had announced to promote us to Grade-16 but nothing was done,” Sathio said, adding that the teachers’ joint action committee has decided to continue the protest until their issues are resolve with a proper notification.

SC dismisses 85 ghost teachers’ appeals

“We welcome the cabinet’s decision but the government must address our other genuine demands,” he said, adding that they will spend the rest of the winter on the footpath outside the Karachi Press Club.

The teachers reached Karachi a few days ago after a long march that started from Bhit Shah in Hala. “This year a number of times the incumbent government has attacked teachers using water cannons, so we have invited other colleagues from all over Sindh to celebrate 2017 as a black year,” Sathio said, adding that currently 150 teachers are part of the protest but this number will be increased by around 100 in the next few days.

The teachers have also issued a statement saying that they will convene an all parties’ conference on January 2 where all political parties will be invited and will, on January 4, march towards Bilawal House for a concrete resolution to their demands.

Education reforms

The regularisation issue was taken up by Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah as an additional agenda item during the cabinet meeting on Saturday.

Bilawal slams govt’s use of force on protesting teachers in Karachi

He said that the NTS-qualified contract teachers and the contract teachers of Sindh University number around 2,100. He added that the under the teachers’ recruitment rules, there is a condition that they must pass a test for regularisation.

“I have taken it up as a mission to improve education in the public sector, for which I need the support of the cabinet members, academicians, civil society and parents,” he said. Shah also directed the chief secretary to prepare a comprehensive education reforms draft bill in which the entire education system is revamped. From textbooks, the educational environment at schools, capacity building of teachers, training, performance-based incentives such as increments and promotions, in-service training and refresher courses and the establishment of high quality teachers training academy should be covered in the bill, he directed.

But, Shah told the chief secretary to prepare a bill to regularise the teachers’ jobs before undertaking any of these reforms.


The cabinet members said that Muttahida Qaumi Movement – London Chief Altaf Hussain has been involved in anti-state activities, therefore any building, ground or anything else named after him should be renamed. The CM directed the chief secretary to prepare a list of such areas.

Teachers again protest for salary increase, promotions

Animal welfare

The Sindh Welfare and Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 2017 was presented during the meeting. The CM said the Treaty of Amsterdam, which came into force on May 1, 1999 includes a protocol on animal welfare designed to ensure improved protection and respect for animals as sentient beings.

He said that animals have inalienable right to live in an environment which is free from abuse. They have the right to adequate nourishment and appropriate shelter, treatment and care.

Shah added that the harmonious existence of all living things contributes to a healthy sense of respect for animals and violation of these fundamental principles would result in degradation of natural and moral fabric of society.

Wildlife Secretary Asif Hyder Shah said that the proposed law would also made it illegal to cruelly beat, overtax, overload, torture or terrify any animal. He added the other things would also be illegal including causing an animal unnecessary suffering through transportation, take part in fighting or baiting of animals and administering poisonous or injurious substances without good reason. The law bans operations to be carried out on animals without due care and humanity, the hunting of injured animals and the hunting of animals in enclosed spaces.

The cabinet approved the concept of the law and formed a committee, with local government minister as chairperson and the livestock minister and wildlife secretary as members, to go through the draft once again and frame rules so that it could be passed in the assembly in the next session. Express News.