HT, 18 July 2016, DARJEELING: Both Trinamool and Jan Andolan Party have declared support to the newlyformed Hill Secondary Temporary Teachers’ Organisation (HSTTO, a breakaway faction of Janmukti Insecure Secondary Teachers’ Organisation).
In what is being seen as a major blow to GJM, 62 teachers of its frontal organisation, Janmukti Insecure Secondary Teachers’ Organisation, have broken away and floated HSTTO.
“We support the cause of the ad hoc teachers. It is a just cause. Earlier, I met West Bengal education minister Partha Chatterjee with their demand. We will continue our support to the ad hoc teachers,” said Harka Bahadur Chettri, president of JAP and former MLA of Kalimpong.
Even the TMC echoed similar sentiments. “We are with the ad hoc teachers. We will talk to Kolkata and see what can be done,” said Rajen Mukhia, president, TMC, Darjeeling district committee (Hills).
The HSTTO which has members mostly from Kalimpong has declared that they will function as an apolitical unit but will welcome the support from any political outfit.
“We will not align ourselves with any political party and will remain an apolitical outfit. However, we will welcome the support from any political party for our just demand,” said Roshan Chettri, the chief coordinator of the newly formed outfit.
While 15 members had quit from JISTO earlier, 62 members from Kalimpong subdivision tendered their resignation to JISTO on Sunday. “We will visit Darjeeling and Kurseong soon where more JISTO members are scheduled to join us,” said Chettri.
Trouble started brewing with GJM unilaterally declaring the sudden dissolution of JISTO Movement Committee on July 8. No reasons were given for the sudden dissolution. More than 500 ad hoc teachers have been agitating for the past one year demanding immediate regularisation under the aegis of JISTO.
GJM in November, 2015 formed the JISTO Movement Committee to give more muscle to the movement. However, of late the committee had become critical of both GTA education department and Roshan Giri, executive member in charge of the education department’s role, and had blamed for prolonging the impasses.
Though the Movement Committee was dissolved the GJM declared that JISTO would continue to function. The Movement Committee challenged the decision saying the nomenclature of JISTO had been changed to JISTO Movement Committee and dissolving the committee would amount to dissolving JISTO.