Madhya Pradesh: 2 suicides by school guest teachers in past one week

Bhopal: Unable to make both ends meet amid continuing unemployment, two school guest faculty members have committed suicide in the past one week, taking the overall toll to 63. The Atithi Shikshak Sangh has demanded that the state government consider their demand to save their families and their children’s future.

Two members of the guest faculty — one in Narsinghpur and the other in Panna — took the extreme step after being out of a job since April as the schools have been closed because of the corona pandemic-induced lockdown. Vipin Singh, posted at Ajaygarh, in Panna district, hanged himself on Tuesday, said president of the Atithi Shikshak Sangh Sunil Parihar. Earlier, Satyaprakash Jatav, posted in Middle School at Basari, in Narsinghpur district, jumped into a well and ended his life. “Sixty-three of our colleagues have committed suicide until now,” lamented Parihar.

The School Education Department has not extended the contract of about 70,000 guest faculty members across the state since April. About 14,000 guest faculty members have not received their honorarium for an earlier period, as well. Most guest faculty members received their last payment in the months of March and April. Since all schools are closed, they are left with no income at all. Having struggled through more than seven months without any honorarium, they are finding it extremely difficult to survive.

A delegation of the Shikshak Sangh met the principal secretary of the School Education Department on Tuesday and apprised her of their problems. A member of the delegation said the principal secretary had said the matter was pending at the chief ministerial level.

The president of the Atithi Shikshak Sangh further said that they had sought an appointment from the chief minister and would apprise him of the problems they were facing due to certain wrong policies of the state government. Resolving these problems would not put much load on the state exchequer, he remarked.

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