The planned series of protest agitation will begin with wearing black badges by students reading in class IX to University level from August 4 to 9 and sealing all ZEO offices. This would be followed by 96 hours of State wide bandh from August 11 to 14. The bandh which comes into effect from the midnight of August 10 will exempt schools, colleges, medical, water supply, electricity and religious services.
In continuance of their protest movement, the tribal students will stay away from the Independence Day celebration. All private and Government schools will be shut during August 18 to 23 and there will be picketing of all Government offices located in hill districts.
This would be followed by sealing all Government offices indefinitely in hill districts from August 25 until and unless adequate strength of teachers and necessary infrastructure are provided to all Government schools located in hill districts. At the same time, all ZEO and DI offices will be sealed.
On August 30, a rally against the failure of the State Government to execute its own decisions will be taken out at Delhi under the aegis of ATSUM in collaboration with tribal students staying there.
This was disclosed by ATSUM information and publicity secretary Joseph R Hmar during a press meet at its Old Lambulane office this afternoon.
Joseph said that out of 145 faculty members teaching in 25 Departments of Manipur University, one three are tribals. As against 305 non-teaching staff, there are only 46 tribal employees.
As long as the University Act 2005 is amended, reservation in centralised Manipur University for tribals will stand at just 7.5 percent. Under the existing regulation, tribal students and people are facing great hardships in getting admissions and jobs in the University. Even as the ATSUM has been persistently urging upon the Government to increase the quota for tribals so as to redress their woes, the ATSUM functionary decried that the Government is still refusing to act in this regard. He also demanded a separate university for tribal people. Asserting that schools located in hill districts have been facing shortage of around 576 teachers, he alleged that more problems have cropped up due to irregularities in service extension of contract basis teachers.
The decision to cancel grant-in-aid to 171 aided schools out of total 608 aided schools was a wrong policy on the part of the Government, he contended while asserting that the cancellation of grant-in-aid to 13 high schools amounts to denying education to hill students.
The ATSUM information and publicity secretary further appealed to the people to cooperate towards its proposed series of agitation aimed at redressing the woes of tribal students.