Kejriwal joins teachers’ protest in Mohali – Times of India

CHANDIGARH: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday joined a teachers’ protest in Mohali and promised to regularize their jobs if the Aam Aadmi Party in power in next year’s Punjab Assembly elections.

After landing at Chandigarh airport, Kejriwal went straight to the protest site outside the Punjab School Education Board building, where temporary teachers have been protesting for the last 165 days demanding regularization of their jobs.

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Kejriwal was accompanied by Bhagwant Mann, head of the party’s state unit, Jarnail Singh, in-charge of Punjab affairs, and Harpal Singh Cheema, Leader of the Opposition in the state assembly. He asked the protesting teachers to give the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) a chance to form a government in Punjab and claimed that his government had improved the education system in Delhi and solved the problems of teachers there.

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He condemned the Congress and the previous Akali government for not accepting their demands for the last few years.

“I am here today and I promise you that when our government comes we will regularize you. But I want to assure you that I have talked about the problem of teachers in Delhi. So we will solve the problem in Punjab too,” Kejriwal said.

The national convener of the AAP said he was told by the protesting teachers that they were getting Rs 6,000 per month.

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He said the minimum wage in Delhi is Rs 15,000 per month.

“Give us a chance. If we don’t, you can kick us out next time,” he said, complaining that neither the Congress nor the Akalis had hired temporary teachers regularly during their rule.

He accused the Charanjit Singh Channi-led government of lying in its demand for regularization of the state’s 36,000 contract workers.

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He said a few days ago, some sanitation workers in Punjab met him and complained that he was not regular.

When the “cleaning staff” or teachers were not regularized, who was regularized, he questioned the Congress-led government.

AAP leader also mocked Education Minister Pargat Singh over his claim that Punjab has the best schools.

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Kejriwal came to Pargat and asked the protesting teachers to ask how good the schools in the state were.

“They will tell their pain and then you will know how good the schools are in Punjab. If you do not understand the problem and how you can solve it,” Kejriwal said while taunting Pargat Singh.

Kejriwal further claimed that during his recent visit to Ludhiana, he was told that there were several schools where there was not even a single teacher to teach the students.

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Later, the Delhi chief minister spoke to some more protesting teachers sitting on top of an overhead water tank in Mohali over their demands.

The Delhi chief minister, during his last visit to Punjab, promised eight “guarantees” for comprehensive education reform and promised that if his party came to power in the elections, they would be implemented on a priority basis.

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