It turned out to be a happy Wednesday for thousands of protesting Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA) school teachers as education minister Lahkmen Rymbui agreed to release their two months’ salary.
“The government has agreed to release our salaries for October and November. During the meeting, he (education minister) has agreed in principle to release from the capping norms out of Rs 100 crores,” said the president of Meghalaya SSA School Teachers’ Association (MSSASA), Aristotle Rymbai.
And for the remaining three months that is December, January and February, the education minister has assured that when they receive the second instalment from the Centre, they will clear the pending salaries, he added. Following the meeting with Rymbui, the delegation headed to Malki playground to announce the decision to their fellow teachers.
The government’s decision came hours after the central body of MSSASA took out a massive protest march against the government’s apathy towards the release of pending salaries of 12541 SSA teachers for October 2021-February 2022, from Polo Grounds, on Wednesday.
The streets of Shillong echoed with slogans such as “we want salary” and “MDA government down, down,” as the teachers, holding placards and banners made their way from Polo Ground’s Night Bus stand to Secretariat. They, however, were stopped by police personnel at the All India Radio office. Bomfyle Road. Soon after, the education minister called the protesting teachers for talks on the issue and the decision to release their salaries was taken.
Interestingly, the education minister, yesterday, had urged the teachers not to stage the protest and said that the government will “try to do something” after the budget session, which is slated from March 4 to 17.
Earlier, irked at the government’s apathy towards the issue, the MSSASA, on February 22, had threatened to storm the secretariat if the state government failed to release their pending salary by February 28.