Patna: The Bihar government has decided to extend the validity of employment certificates of nearly 82,180 candidates who passed Teacher Eligibility Test(TET) & Special Teacher Eligibility Test (STET) in 2012, for two more years. Employment certificate of these candidates had expired in May & June this year.

Currently, the TET and STET certificates were valid for seven years. Reports quoted Additional Chief Secretary of Education R K Mahajan as saying that in July 2019, the schedules for appointment of all these will be issued.

Earlier in May this year, the Supreme Court refused to regularise the services of nearly 4 lakh contractual workers and set aside the Patna High Court ruling that they were eligible to get equal pay for equal work.

A bench of Justices Abhay Manohar Sapre and U U Lalit allowed the plea of the Bihar government challenging the October 31, 2017, high court order and declined to treat contractual teachers at par with regular educators.

The top court said the Bihar government was justified in having two different streams or cadres for teachers and there has been no violation of the rights of ‘Niyojit’ (contractual) teachers nor has there been any discrimination against them.

It, however, raised concern over the emoluments made available to Niyojit teachers at the initial stage and suggested that the state may consider raising the scales of such teachers at least to the level suggested by the three-member committee.

“If a pay structure is normally to be evolved keeping in mind factors such as ‘method of recruitment’ and ’employer’s capacity to pay’ and if the limitations or qualifications to the applicability of the doctrine of ‘equal pay for equal work’ admit inter alia the distinction on the ground of process of recruitment, the stand taken on behalf of state government is not unreasonable or irrational,” the bench said.

It said the budgetary constraints or financial implications can never be ground if there is a violation of fundamental rights of a citizen.

The apex court said it does not find that the efforts on part of the state government could be labelled as “unfair or discriminatory”.