Tuesday, March 4, 2008

JBT Scam
Fate of 3,000 teachers hangs in balance
Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 4
With the Supreme Court giving a go-ahead signal to the CBI to file chargesheets against former Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala and his MP son Ajay Singh Chautala, it has been established that the process to select over 3,000 JBT teachers was vitiated by the substitution of the genuine list by a bogus list in 2000.

The CBI, which was asked by the apex court to go into the matter, has made out its case that the candidates of the bogus list were appointed and those on the genuine selection list were denied the appointment.

Now, the persons named by the CBI as being responsible for the unprecedented substitution of the selection lists will face prosecution and, depending upon the evidence which the CBI will produce before the court to justify its conclusions, may also be punished.

But what happens to those who had been drawing their salaries from the public exchequer for the last eight years, though they were not entitled to do so and also to those who had been waiting for justice all these years?

It was only after the respondents had conceded before the apex court that the two selection lists existed, the Supreme Court asked the CBI to find out which list was genuine and which was bogus.

Ordering the CBI inquiry, the apex court had also answered the question about the fate of the “selected” and “unselected” candidates.

The court said their fate would depend upon the result of the inquiry. “It is only one set of persons, who will be found genuine and hence entitled to hold the posts of teacher and persons from the list (from which the candidates were given appointment), if found to be false, shall have to make room for others.”

On the face of it, the Supreme Court made it very clear that once the CBI completed its inquiry, the list held as genuine by the premier investigating agency would prevail and the candidates on it would get appointment.

The state government has so far not given any thought to these consequences of the CBI case against the Chautalas and several government officers who were associated with the selection process directly or indirectly.

The spirit behind the JBT teachers case in the apex court, Congress MLA from Palwal Karan Singh Dalal, today demanded that the state government should immediately terminate the services of the “tainted” JBT teachers and issue appointment letters to those who were denied their justified due by the INLD government eight years ago.

Dalal also demanded the resignation of the Chautalas from the Assembly and the Rajya Sabha.

He said the salary paid to the “tainted” teachers should be recovered from the Chautalas, who not only sinned against those who were denied their due but also against schoolchildren who were forced to learn from “incompetent” teachers.

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