Strike: Govt says 95% teachers back to work, JACTTO-GEO says no, CM's emotional appeal

While the government claimed that 95 per cent of striking teachers returned to work on Tuesday, the Joint Action Council of Tamil Nadu Teachers’ Organisations and Government Employees’ Organisations (JACTTO-GEO) denied the claim. However, it urged the government to invite it for talks. When a case in this regard came up for hearing before the Madras High Court, advocate N G R Prasad, who appeared for JACTTO-GEO said, "Let the Chief Minister talk with us. The problem will be solved. This kind of impasse will not help anyone. We have genuine grievances. Our pay arrears have not been disbursed and there are serious pay anomalies. All these have to be sorted out."

In response, Additional Advocate General (AAG) P H Arvindh Pandian told the court, "We are not calling anybody for talks and I am saying this on clear instructions." Prasad then urged the court: "Your Lordship may issue a direction to the Chief Minister to have a dialogue with us. When this court can summon and issue directions to the Chief Secretary, then why not to the Chief Minister? This is a democratic country. We do not know who will be the Chief Minister after the next election."

Meanwhile, Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Tuesday made an emotional appeal to the striking teachers and employees, to resume work immediately in public interest. He pointed out that factors like drought, drinking water scarcity and the adverse effects of cyclone Gaja affected Tamil Nadu. "Under such circumstances, rather than being self-centric it is our duty to do people's work with a sense of sacrifice and by relinquishing our rights sometimes", he added.

JACTTO-GEO, Chief Minister