Talks between striking teachers, CM fail
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By Mohammad Ashfaq | 10/12/2017 12:00:00 AM
PESHAWAR: Despite the government`s nod to withdraw its decision to form board of governors in public sector colleges, negotiations between the chief minister and striking teachers over other matters remained inconclusive on Wednesday.

The teachers announced that they would continue boycotting duty until the acceptance of their all demands by the government.

College Professors and Lecturers Association president Hameedullah Afridi said their meeting with the chief minister didn`t bear fruit.

`The grant of professional allowance and one-step upgradation are our main demands, which were not accepted by the chief minister,` he told Dawn.

Mr Afridi said the teachers` third demand was the withdrawal of the proposed formation of BoGs in government colleges, which the chief minister accepted in the meeting.

Another association leader said teachers were also thinking to stage a sit-in outside the mansion of PTI chief Imran Khan in Banigala, Islamabad.

`The chief minister told teachersthat their professional allowance and one-step upgradation will cost the exchequer billions of rupees,` a participant told Dawn.

He said the chief minister told visitors that it would set a very bad example as other government employees working in schools, police and other government departments would also demand professional allowance.

Anofficial statementissued here said Chief Minister Pervez Khattak withdrew the plan after meeting with a delegation of the Association of Professors and Lecturers.

The statement said the association expressed reservations on some of the steps linked to the overall reforms for the higher education.

The colleges remained closed across the province since Tuesday after teachers went on strike.

The teachers had also staged protest demonstrations in different cities and towns against the plan.

On the other hand, students held demonstrations against the closure of colleges.

The CM rolling back the blueprint for the overall reforms in the higher educadon regretted that pressuring the government, bringing the students to parade on the roads and locking down the public sector colleges were not acceptable.

He said that overall plan for reforming higher and secondary education system was on noble intension. He said agitating against the noble intension was becoming an unwanted attitude fast becoming an unaffordable behavior threatening the overall social fabric ofthe society.

Mr Khattak said the closure of institutions and negative propaganda was uncalled-for.

`There are other ways to register a protest which he added ultimately reached to the government,` he added.

The CM said the government established boards and authorities in all public sector entities to have power and authority for effective and transparent decision making that would lead to a more transparent mechanism.

He said the government wanted to bring them out of the bureaucratic circle, give them power and authority so that they could contribute to the growth and upgradation of their institutions.

`If the teaching community doesn`t agree to their welfare, then the government is left with no option but to withdraw the plan,` the statement quoted Mr Khattak as saying.

The CM said he would never make a compromise on monitoring through a biometric system for discouraging absenteeism.

He termed the demand of the teaching community illogical and thus, creating a mismatch between their responsibility and their proposed upgradation.

He regretted that he had a plan for the upgradation of professors and lecturers but that should have been commensurate to the overall reforms in the colleges of the higher secondary education system of the province.

Mr Khattak withdrew his government`s directives for the establishment of the board of governors in government colleges in the province.