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Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: In a shocking incident, a teacher died during a protest at Lower PMG in Bhubaneswar on Tuesday. The deceased has been identified as Niranjan Barik, who hails from Mayurbhanj district.

According to reports, Barik was staging a dharna along with other teachers demanding re-evaluation of Odisha Teacher Eligibility Test (OTET), the results of which were announced recently. The protest was launched against the alleged injustice after OTET was made mandatory for recruitment of teachers by the State government.

“Today, Niranjan and others were staging a demonstration when he reportedly fell sick and died due to a suspected cardiac arrest. We do not know the exact reason behind his death,” said Bhaskar Chandra Mahanta, another protesting teacher.

Mahanta further stated that several teachers had got jobs in 2008 and later Odisha government issued notification thereby making OTET mandatory for recruitment of teachers. “If our demands are not met, we will be forced to intensify the agitation in coming days,” he added.

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