School land donors reiterate job regularization demand

School land donors reiterate job regularization demand
Fri, Jan 11, 2019

PANKAJ DHUNGEL

GANGTOK: People employed as temporary employees for having donated land for construction of schools and other infrastructures have reiterated their demand for job regularisation by the State government.
Stating that the demand has been pending since 2006, at least 100 members came under the School Land Donors Association (SLDA) demanding an audience with Chief Minister Pawan Chamling to address the issue. They asserted that they are one of the biggest contributors to the success of State education and literacy, yet they are being marginalized as temporary employees in different schools.
Speaking to newsmen at Singtam Nagar Panchayat building on Thursday, SLDA members led by general secretary Ranjit Rai claimed that they have reached out to the State government including the chief secretary and the HRD department officials for regularization of their current government jobs, yet no action has been taken.
“The association was formed on August 19, 2018 to address the injustice being faced by the school land donors of the State. Land donors have been employed in the school, mostly as group D employees. But we are not being regularized despite reaching out to the State government time and again. We have filed three RTIs but the replies have never been satisfactory,” stated Rai.
Stating that the improved literacy and one of the best education hubs reputation earned by Sikkim should also be attributed to the land donors, the SLDA members lamented that they are the ones facing harassment as their voices are being quelled in terms of their contribution to the education system in the State. “Our voices need to reach the right place and we want the Chief Minister to hear our grievances as none of the other authorities are listening to us,” they added.
The SLDA drew comparisons with the previous notifications passed by the government with regards to the land donors’ job regularization. They stated those before 2004 were regularized in their jobs, but after that in two years’ time, the notification categorised them as adhoc employees but in 2016 the notification didn’t allow them to claim jobs based on their contribution as land donors.
“Now, even those who have already been granted jobs as land donors prior to 2016 are being told to wait for five years to get their jobs regularized. But there are many land donors who have worked longer than that, yet their jobs are not being regularized.”
“We haven’t got our jobs based on the recommendation of some ministers or the area MLA. We have got our jobs based on our contribution as land donors. So putting us in the purview like every other government employees waiting for five years before job regularization doesn’t stand well with us. We want to meet the Chief Minister so that he can listen to our grievances in person. We have reached out to the authorities of the concerned department, but knowing that the Rs. 9,000 as monthly salary for our contribution is injustice from the State government", stated SLDA treasurer Diwash Chhetri.
Over 100 land donors to different schools in the State were present at the press conference representing over 1,000 schools in the State.


Area: 7096 Sq Km
Capital:Gangtok
Altitude: 5,840 ft
Population: 6.10 Lakhs
Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 ft. to over 28,509 ft above sea level
Climate:
Summer: Max- 21°C ; Min- 13°C
Winter: Max- 13°C ; Min- 0.48°C
Rainfall: 325 cm per annum
Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi