PRIMARY SECTIONTEACHERS IN NON-AIDED CATHOLIC SCHOOLS (AFFILIATED TO THE ABE): DEMANDS FOR ARREARS
Through various Press Reports, we have been given to understand that the Primary Teachers from Non-Aided Catholic Schools, affiliated to the Archdiocesan Board of Education (ABE), will join the protest and fast at Archbishop's House. We wish to place on record that, to the best of our knowledge, none of our offices (Archbishop's House, Press Office and Archdiocesan Board of Education) have received any intimation with regard to any Primary Teacher joining the the said fast.
The claim made by the protesters, in news reports, is that the teachers are joining the protest as they have not been paid their arrears. We clarify that in the case of our Primary Schoolteachers in non- aided Catholic schools, the salaries have to be met by fees levied on the children and our schools cater mostly to students of the poorer socio-economic strata. Despite the difficulty of meeting the increasing salaries, the Archdiocesan policy has been, that whenever there is a notified increase in pay, the School will give the increase from the date of the notification of the G.R.
We quote here the Judgement of the High Court in the Sunanda Pandharinath Adhav & Ors. vs State of Maharashtra & Ors. on 17 November, 2000. This Judgement states as under:
“To the case of Swaminarayan Education Trust, Ahmedabad and etc. etc. v. State of Gujarat and others, a Division Bench of the Gujarat High Court inter alia held that (i) the Government Resolution revising the pay scales of teachers in aided schools are applicable to the teachers in unaided schools as well; (ii) such payment is a statutory obligation of the management and the teachers concerned have a right to get it enforced and (iii) such resolutions regarding revision in pay scales cannot be made applicable retrospectively to unaided private schools and the decision to make them retrospectively applicable would be unreasonable and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.” – No. 10
The Archdiocese of Bombay states categorically that it cares for its teachers and their welfare. In fact, we go beyond the Government's provisions. The Government Shikshan Seva scheme lays down that for the first three years, in the case of the D.Ed. teacher, the salary will be Rs. 6,000/- a month; in the case of a B.Ed. teacher, the salary will be Rs. 8,000/- a month. However, we have enjoined on all our schools to enhance the amount substantially so that our teachers have a decent wage to live by.
We reiterate here that there are no grounds for protest. We are always open to dialogue, and seek ways of improving our functioning. There are processes in place for grievance redressal which are easily accessible to the community and all those who are employed by the Archdiocese and its affiliates.
Archdiocese of Bombay
29 May 2015