As the government schools in all over the Punjab are going to be resume on August 15 after the summer vacation, all the groups of teachers’ union are gearing up to launch their protest movement collectively from one agreed platform against the privatisation of government schools.
A decision in this regard was taken in a meeting held in Lahore in which as many as ten factions of teachers’ union participated, Pakistan Today has learnt.
“We tried a lot to bring all the factions under one banner in order to launch a rigorous movement as some sit-ins have failed miserably in the recent past because of rifts within the ranks of teachers’ community,” Secretary General of Punjab Teacher’s Union (PTU) Kashif Shahzad Ch said, while talking to Pakistan Today. He further added that the teachers of Punjab will not let the government to hand over the schools to private sector under the “Punjab Daanish Schools and Centers of Excellence Authority Act 2010”.
The School Education Department of Punjab had issued a notification on June 8 this year according to which the government has decided to hand over 13 schools to Danish Authority in Lahore district only. These schools are Government Junior & Central Model School Number 2, Rattigan Road, Government Islamia High School Multan Road, Government Central Model School Samanabad, Government High School Baghbanpura, Government High School Tajpura Scheme, Government Girls High School RA Bazaar, Government Comprehensive Girls High School Wahdat Road, Government High School Township, Government Girls Higher Secondary School Chung, Government High School Kahna Nau, Government Boys Higher Secondary School Jallo More, Government Boys High School Shahdra and Government City Muslim League High School Said Mittha Bazaar.
It may be mentioned here that two factions of teachers’ community have staged sit-ins in front of Punjab Assembly separately in May and July but in vain because of the apparent differences in teachers’ fraternity. The one sit-in was staged by Allah Bakhash Qaiser’s group and the other was recorded by Sajjad Kazmi’s group and now both the groups have decided to launch the protest movement under the banner of Punjab Teachers Council.
Rashid Ahmad Bhatti, the president of Headmasters Association Punjab told this scribe that differences can emerge in every trade union and same was the case with teachers’ union. “Now, all the leading factions have come together under the banner of ‘Punjab Teachers Council’ and they will launch their protest movement in more effective way after the end of summer vacations,” he said.
“The protest movement of teachers will be the last nail in the coffin of rulers as all the political parties will join our protest,” an office bearer of PTU said, who did not want to be named. He further added that it is the right time to launch the protest movement as some major political parties are also planning to come on roads in near future and they will also highlight our issues.