Teachers and employees of non-monthly pay order (non-MPO) educational institutions continued their protest for the second day yesterday. The protesters were demanding the nationalisation of all non-MPO institutions and their inclusion in the MPO list. Several thousand people from non-MPO schools, colleges, madrasas and technical institutions from across the country demonstrated in front of the National Press Club a day after the police had blocked their march towards the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
The protesters under the banner of Non-MPO Educational Institutions Teachers and the Employees’ Federation vowed to continue their agitation in Dhaka till their demands were met.
Federation president Golam Mahmudunnabi Dollar said: “We hope that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will give us an opportunity to meet her.”
“We have talked to the secretary of the secondary and higher secondary education division to meet the PM. He advised us to talk with education minister Dipu Moni in this regard,” he added.
Dollar also said the protesting teachers and employees have no intention of violence or to cause any sort of trouble. “We are just marching towards the PMO to meet the Prime Minister and press home our demands,” he added.
The teachers’ sit-in programme caused huge traffic congestion with vehicular movement grinding to a halt from Paltan to Kadam Fountain.
The police requested the agitators to free at least one lane to ease the traffic bottleneck.
“We requested them to leave the streets several times after they took position there. No violence centring their protest has been reported yet,” said Abul Bashar, inspector (patrol) of Shahbag police station.
Last year, non-MPO teachers and employees had staged a hunger strike for 17 days. They withdrew their demonstration after an assurance from the government to address their demands.