Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

In view of the ongoing strike by the primary school teachers across Odisha, mid-day meals have been stopped at the schools. In an alternative arrangement, Balasore District Education Officer (DEO) has asked the anganwadi workers to provide mid-day meals to the schools across the district during the strike period.

Balasore DEO Prativa Manjari Das has written a letter to the District Social Welfare Officer in this regard.

In the letter, Das mentioned that the Anganwadi centres located on the school premises will take responsibility for providing mid-day meals to the students of the concerned schools. Moreover, the employees of the Anganwadi centres have been asked to open the schools regularly along with providing mid-day meals to students.

“We have requested the workers of Anganwadi centres in the district to open the schools regularly and take responsibility of providing mid-day meals to the students during the strike,” said Balasore DEO, Prativa Manjari Das.

Despite stern warnings and pressure tactics exerted by the State government, primary teachers across Odisha have decided to continue their protest until their demands are not met.

Notably, the primary teachers under the banner of the Primary School Teachers’ Association are staging the agitation seeking fulfillment of their demands including job regularisation and pay hike.

As per reports, the abolition of contractual appointment as has been done in the case of high school teachers is their first demand. Besides, the inclusion of ex-cadre teachers in the elementary cadre, hike of grade pay, formulation of service cadre for Art teachers and PETs, filling up of vacancies, and old pension system are among the major demands.