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Examining the Telangana High Court Scrutiny of Teacher Promotion Process Amid Dispute

Examining the Telangana High Court Scrutiny of Teacher Promotion Process Amid Dispute

The High Court of Telangana has raised questions regarding the continuation of the teacher promotion process while a related dispute is still pending with a single judge. On Tuesday, the High Court questioned the government on how it is proceeding with promotions despite the unresolved legal matter.

Clarification from the High Court

The High Court expressed its displeasure towards School Education Commissioner Sridevasena for continuing the teacher promotion process despite the ongoing dispute. The court highlighted that this action could be seen as a violation of judicial orders. The single judge had directed that promotions should proceed without considering the Teacher Eligibility Test (TET). However, this order was overturned by a division bench, sending the matter back for further review. The High Court emphasized the need to withdraw the current promotion orders until a final decision is made.

Background of the Dispute

The controversy began when approximately 150 petitioners challenged the exclusion of Secondary Grade Teachers (SGTs) who had not qualified in the TET from being considered for promotion to School Assistant posts. A single judge issued an interim order allowing promotions regardless of TET qualifications. This interim order was subsequently challenged by 52 appellants. On June 14, a bench comprising Justice Abhinand Kumar Shavili and Justice Alishetti Lakshminarayana began reviewing the appeals.

Advocate P.S. Rajasekhar, representing the petitioners, argued that promoting teachers without TET qualifications would be unfair. On the other hand, the respondents’ advocate, Rangaopala Rao, contended that TET qualifications are mandatory for School Assistant posts as per National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) regulations. However, it was noted that the petitioners were appointed as SGTs between 1995 and 1998, while the NCTE notification came in 2010. Furthermore, a Government Order (G.O.) issued in 2015 exempted those appointed before 2010 from needing TET qualifications. The bench referred the dispute back to the single judge for reconsideration, taking into account both the NCTE notification and G.O. 36.

Implementation of June 14 Orders

Despite the pending dispute, the government commenced the promotion process. The government’s lawyer mentioned in court on Tuesday that the government was unaware of the appeals and had not received any copies of them. He requested more time to clarify the matter with the relevant officials. Consequently, the bench summoned the School Education Commissioner Sridevasena, who explained that the process began in accordance with NCTE norms, including consideration of non-TET qualified teachers. The bench reprimanded her, stating that proceeding with the process despite the single judge’s overturned order is a violation of court orders.

The High Court reiterated that only the orders issued on June 14 remain in effect and closed the hearing, stating that no new directives would be issued regarding the appeals.

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