Contractual staff of the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), who had been serving for the last 12 years, have demanded the regularisation of their services and pay at par with state government employees.

Dr RD Sharma, Deputy Director (retd), Education, and state convener, HP Educational Consultant Forum, in a letter to Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, said the present government was eager for regularising the services of PTA teachers, who were appointed by ignoring the then prevailing recruitment and promotion rules of the Education Department. Their appointments were made by the panchayat pradhans, most of whom were far less qualified than the candidates. Sharma in his letter said that the staff for the SSA was appointed by the Deputy Commissioners, who were better qualified than the applicants.

Dr Sharma said of 59 staff members at the State Project Office, Shimla, 31 were on contract basis and the remaining 28 on secondment basis. He said all the employees looking after civil and construction works were on contract basis without R&P rules. He said 87 junior engineers, 12 draughtsmen and 13 assistant engineers were working in the SSA in the state on contract, since its establishment in 2002. Sharma said of Rs 112.94 crore, total expenditure incurred by the SSA in HP on construction works during 2009-2010 was Rs 33.36 crore and during 2010-2011, of Rs 155.06 crore, a total expenditure of Rs 64.67 crore was incurred on civil works. He raised question and inquired “When huge works were being carried out by the SSA staff, why were they were not being regularised?”

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