Hundreds of teaching job aspirants Wednesday staged protests near Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s residence here alleging that they have been deprived of appointment in schools due to irregularities in the recruitment process.
Demanding that they be given jobs immediately in government-sponsored and aided primary schools, the agitators, who claimed to have cleared the Teacher Eligibility Test (TET) in 2014, blocked Kalighat crossing in the afternoon bringing traffic to a grinding halt.
They sought to meet Banerjee to press for their demands and claimed that they were heckled by the police personnel and forcefully removed from the protest site.
The police personnel on duty had a harrowing time controlling the situation.
As their pleas to vacate the road fell on deaf ears, the police used force to remove the protestors from the area.
The protestors were whisked away in vehicles to the Lalbazar police headquarters.
“We did not make it to the merit list despite studying hard and clearing the examination. But names of politicians featured in the list. Is it not a mockery of justice? We want justice,” a protestor said.
The protestor was referring to the recent list released by the West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBPE), which had names like Mamata Banerjee, Suvendu Adhikari, Dilip Ghosh, Sujan Chakraborty as candidates who have cleared the examination. After the names created uproar, the board had clarified that these were mere namesakes and the merit list, published in its website recently, had names of other candidates as well.
“These were namesakes and the candidates lists had the names of the candidate’s parents and their contact details,” it said.
The CBI is investigating alleged irregularities in the recruitment of primary and secondary school teachers by the West Bengal Board of Primary Education and the School Service Commission on the orders of Calcutta High Court.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) is probing the alleged money trail involved in the irregularities.
Former state education minister Partha Chatterjee and a number of senior officials were arrested by the central probe agencies in the alleged teachers’ recruitment scam. Chatterjee was sacked as minister and from the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) party.