Published: 20th October 2020
Karnataka PU lecturer candidates end protest after Education Minister agrees to give appointment letters in November
Since the minister is being treated at home for COVID-19, he connected with protestors through MLC K T Srikantegowda's phone. He is also the President of Karnataka PU College Principal's Association
The eight-day long protest held by the shortlisted candidates for the PU college lecturers' post finally came to an end on Monday evening when Suresh Kumar S, Primary and Secondary Education Minister, promised to give them their appointment letters in the month of November. Since the minister is being treated at home for COVID-19, he connected with the candidates through MLC K T Srikantegowda's phone. He is also the President of Karnataka PU College Principal's Association.
Avinash, from Hassan, who is also one of the shortlisted candidates and was part of the protest, explains, "The minister assured us on the phone that the appointment letters will be released between November 6 to 15. He told us that he is always on the teachers' side. It is not right on his part to release the letters when the model code of conduct is already in place due to by-polls in Karnataka. We have temporarily called off the protest because we have been assured about the appointment letter through a written document by K T Srikantegowda. Aside from this, Suresh Kumar also wrote it on his Facebook page that he will keep up his words."
We asked Avinash what if the government fails to pass the appointment letters, he says, "We don't mind sitting down for a protest again in the month of November. The previous protest was non-violent and a peaceful one. The next protest would not be the same kind. We will step out on the roads and raise our voice. Currently, there are 1,203 vacant posts and the government has selected the same number of candidates."
What led to the protest?
The state government called for PU lecturers application in 2014 and many people across the state applied for it. However, the consecutive state governments did not hold the exam citing several reasons. Finally, in 2018, the Government of Karnataka conducted exams and released the final list of shortlisted candidates in October 2019. A few months ago, the counselling happened and candidates were also told about the college and district that they need to join. However, again the government has delayed giving them appointment letters. They cited the pandemic as a reason and a lack of funds in the state government's treasury. Recently, they cited the code of conduct for the elections as a reason. Hence, around 400 candidates from across Karnataka were protesting continuously.