RAWALPINDI, Jan 6: College teachers across the Punjab would resume their strike for acceptance of their demands from Monday after the provincial government went back on its words, the Punjab Lecturers and Professors Association (PLPA) said on Friday.
President of the Rawalpindi chapter of association, Mohammad Ilyas Qureshi, said the college teachers had called off their strike in November after Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif assured the association that their demands would be met and appointed a committee comprising two provincial ministers and four secretaries for the purpose where the assurances reiterated.
“But now we have been informed by Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah that our demands cannot be met. I don`t know what made the government go back on its words. Anyway, we are left with no option but to boycotting classes again,” he told Dawn .
On January 12, the teachers will take out a rally from Nasir Bagh to the Punjab Assembly in Lahore, he said.
PLPA has some 20,000 members in 500 colleges across the province. The association had been demanding a time schedule for upgrading their pay scales, regularization of contract lecturers and one-time promotion for all professors.
Ilyas Qureshi regretted that lecturers appointed through Public Service Commission in other provinces were offered regular jobs while in Punjab they were offered contractual jobs, adding that, the three demands put forward by the lecturers in other provinces have already been met. “Only in Punjab, lecturers and professors are promoted to the next scale after 25 years and we have demanded that this timescale should be reduced to 10 years. We cannot tolerate this cruel criterion and will show our strength forcing the government to bow to our legitimate demands,” he added.
Over 3,000 lecturers in 88 colleges of Rawalpindi division would also boycott the classes and would wear black armbands for registering their protest besides taking their students into confidence for raising voice in support of their legitimate demands.
Qureshi said that the protest would continue till its logical end and would not be stopped on the false assurances of the government. “It will continue until our demands are practically met and we will not surrender,” he said.