Teacher unions upset with A.P. JAC decision to drop ‘chalo Vijayawada’ protest on February 27

They accuse the JAC leaders of taking the decision without the government giving any clarity on the payment of ₹20,000 crore arrears pending under various heads

Updated - February 25, 2024 08:51 pm IST

Published - February 25, 2024 08:50 pm IST - VIJAYAWADA

Leaders of various teachers’ associations have condemned the decision of the Andhra Pradesh Joint Action Committee (JAC) to postpone the ‘chalo Vijayawada’ protest by the government employees, teachers and pensionsers proposed on February 27.

A.P. United Teachers’ Federation (UTF) State president N. Venkateswarlu and general secretary K.S.S. Prasad said the issue was discussed in the executive meeting organised on February 25 (Sunday).

They said that teachers were upset that the JAC leaders decided to drop the plan without the government giving any clarity on the pending payments of ₹20,000 crore towards Provident Fund, Andhra Pradesh Government Life Insurance scheme and other heads.

The promised G.O. on payment of arrears of the 11th PRC was also not released yet and the government’s claim that they would constitute the 12th PRC without paying the interim relief was a sham, they alleged.

The Ministers participating in the talks with the employees’ unions had been evading answers on the government’s failure to implement the Old Pension Scheme (OPS) for the employees recruited before September in 2004 and regularise the services of 10,000 contract staff working in the government departments, they alleged.

Andhra Pradesh Teachers’ Federation (APTF) State president C.H. Manjula and general secretary K. Bhanu Murthy said the JAC leaders had betrayed the employees and teachers by agreeing to drop the protest plan without achieving any of the demands put forth by the unions.

At a meeting organised by the Group of Ministers with the members of the Joint Staff Council on February 23, Chief Secretary K.S. Jawahar Reddy said there was a progress from the previous meeting, as staff was sanctioned to assist the 12th PRC and prepare bills pertaining to payment of ₹80 crore for medical reimbursement, ₹70 crore towards TA/DA and ₹100 crore to the employees under the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS). “The remaining dues will be cleared as per the schedule given in the earlier meeting,” Mr. Jawahar Reddy had assured.

The Chief Secretary also noted that the elections process had commenced and that government employees were undergoing training for it. He also said that implementation of welfare programmes was at its final stage. He said the presence of government functionaries was very crucial at this point.

Stating that the gathering of employees at one place might lead to untoward incidents, the Chief Secretary had asked the union leaders to call off their proposed agitation.

Main demands

The employees’ unions are seeking immediate steps to address their four main issues — sanction of 30% Interim Relief to the government employees, implementation of OPS for employees recruited on or before September 1, 2004 and joined after September 1, 2004, restoration of additional quantum of pension from 7% to 10% and 12% to 15% for those who attained the age of 70 years and 75 years respectively, and clearance of all GPF, APGLI, earned leave surrender bills, DA arrears, PRC arrears, GIS, retirement gratuity, commutation and 10% of government share for CPS employees by fixing a schedule.

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