While parliamentarians were debating the reinstatement of 7,187 former contractual employees of the Education Department on Friday in the Sindh Assembly, just a short distance away, the police resorted to baton-charging, tear-gassing and bashing the non-teaching staff demonstrating for their restoration and regularisation.
The riot police even used water cannons to disperse the protesters when they moved towards the Sindh Assembly. The demonstrators, who were trying to draw the attention the people’s representatives, were beaten and dragged by policemen and at least six of them sustained injuries, while 20 others were taken into custody.
The injured were shifted to the Civil Hospital and a nearby eye clinic for treatment. The protest was still going on till the filing of this report despite assurance by the education minister that a summary had been signed for their restoration.
“We want to remind the concerned officials that they have made certain promises regarding our jobs. We are not violent and nor have we destroyed any property. Nonetheless, the police have chosen to assault us just outside the assembly building,” said Darya Khan Jamali, President of the All Sindh Education Department Lower Staff Association.
The sacked contractual employees now intend to stage a sit-in outside the Karachi Press Club (KPC) until the government issues a notification of their reinstatement, he added. Earlier, the demonstration had been called off because representatives of the government had guaranteed that the problem would be solved once and for all.
Jamali pointed out that once again the police assaulted the former non-teaching staff working on a contractual basis in different districts of Sindh.
“We ended our sit-in protest in front of the KPC when the government had promised to resolve our issues,” Jamali said. “However, it seems that the government had no serious intention for reinstating former contractual employees,” he added.