781 teacher posts are vacant in the state, Bratya Basu claims in the assembly

In a recent address to the Legislative Assembly, Education Minister Bratya Basu disclosed that there are a total of 781 vacant teacher positions across primary, upper primary, secondary, and higher secondary levels in the state. This revelation has, however, ignited a wave of controversy and confusion among job seekers, opposition members, and teachers' unions.

According to Minister Basu, the distribution of vacancies is as follows: 13 in higher secondary, 28 in secondary, 473 in upper primary, and 267 in primary. He assured the assembly that these positions would be filled in compliance with court directives. The minister attributed the delay in recruitment to legal cases and ongoing investigations by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) concerning teacher appointments.

This announcement has not quelled the concerns of hundreds of thousands of job seekers who have been protesting for years. Many of them claim that there are approximately three lakh vacant teaching positions, a number significantly higher than the 781 cited by the education minister. The discrepancy has led to questions about the transparency of the recruitment process and the accuracy of the information provided by the ministry.

Sushant Ghosh, a leader in the recruitment movement and a job seeker for the position of upper primary teacher, expressed skepticism, stating, "The Education Department informed the court that there are about 13,000 vacancies at the secondary level and about 5,500 at the higher secondary level. Then how were only 781 vacancies talked about?"

Kinkar Adhikari, the general secretary of Shikshanuragi Oikya Manch, echoed the sentiments, calling for transparency and stating, "I don't understand how the vacancies have been filled without recruitment for years. The account of these 781 vacancies should be published as a white paper."

The opposition has also raised concerns about the consistency of the minister's statement in the Legislative Assembly with the actual number of vacancies. Calls for a detailed account of the 781 vacancies have intensified, with stakeholders seeking clarity and transparency in the recruitment process.

As the controversy unfolds, the spotlight is on the state's education department to provide a comprehensive and transparent explanation of the teacher vacancies, addressing the concerns of job seekers, unions, and opposition members. The demand for a white paper detailing the status of these vacancies grows louder, emphasizing the need for accountability and clarity in the crucial matter of teacher recruitment.

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