'Spit' teacher faces protest

Siliguri, Feb.1: A section of primary school teachers today protested when deputy mayor Ranjan Silsharma, who had spat on the district inspector of schools in 2009, was asked to join state ministers Bratya Basu and Gautam Deb on stage during a workshop at North Bengal University.

The daylong workshop for 1,200 teachers was organised by the District Primary School Council (DPSC) and the West Bengal Board of Primary Education at Vidyasagar Mancha.

Trouble started when dignitaries were being felicitated by the organisers.

When Silsharma, who also looks after the education department in the Siliguri Municipal Corporation, was called on stage, 15-20 teachers in the auditorium started shouting.

Silsharma, also the nominee of the DPSC chairman at the district Sarva Siksha Mission, had not reached the venue till that time. He arrived in five minutes and was felicitated.

"Why is he being felicitated? Why is he being given VIP treatment when he is a primary teacher like us? In that case, all of us should have been called on the on stage to sit with the ministers," said a protester.

State higher education minister Bratya Basu and north Bengal development minister Gautam Deb were present at the event.

"He does not deserve to be felicitated as he has brought a bad name to the teaching community through his misdeeds. Moreover, his name was announced before that of Samar Chakraborty, the DPSC chairman. It was incorrect to announce his (Silsharma's) name for felicitation before that of the chairman," said a teacher.

In June 2009, Silsharma, the secretary of the Trinamul-backed Bengal Primary School Teachers' Association, had spat betel-nut juice on district inspector of schools Riazul Islam's face thrice during an argument. The incident took place in front of journalists.

Today, the protesters were pacified by Deb who got off the dais and spoke to them.

Silsharma, however, sat on the stage throughout the event and left after Basu's departure. "I attended the programme as an invitee. I am not in a position to comment as senior dignitaries were present there," he said.

Primary school council sources justified Silsharma's presence on stage.

"He was invited as a guest as he is in charge of the education department at the SMC and the council chairman's nominee in Sarva Siksha Mission," said a source.

The Congress-backed Prathamik Sikshak Kalyan Samiti said it was a "spontaneous reaction" of the teachers.

Basu and Deb did not comment on the incident.

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Kallis, Narine star in Knight Riders’ crushing win

Kallis, Narine star in Knight Riders’ crushing win

An all-round display saw Knight Riders thump Mumbai Indians by 41 runs in the IPL-7 opener. More »

Pietersen to miss Delhi's first game

Pietersen to miss Delhi's first game

The former England batsman will have to lead the franchise as he is out of the match against Bangalore with a finger injury. More »

Srinivasan named in fixing report: SC

Srinivasan named in fixing report: SC

The court emphasised that the tainted administrator can no longer work for the BCCI. More »

'If you do the wrong thing it will be found out'

'If you do the wrong thing it will be found out'

'Everyone knows what is right and what is wrong and if you do the wrong thing it will be found out' More »

Why I'm not looking forward to the IPL

Why I'm not looking forward to the IPL

Welcome to another season of a league that many watch but few trust. More »

Mitchell Johnson may quit T20s for Test cricket

Mitchell Johnson may quit T20s for Test cricket

Australia's Mitchell Johnson may quit limited-overs cricket to prolong his test career with an eye on the 2015 Ashes series in England, the fast bowler… More »

There's a lot going on: Fleming

There's a lot going on: Fleming

He experienced anxious moments in the lead-up to the tournament as the courts decided on whether to suspend the franchise, he said, but stressed that the… More »

Latif couldn’t work with tainted players

Latif couldn’t work with tainted players

Former Pakistan cricket captain Rashid Latif said Tuesday he turned down the job of national chief selector because he could not work with ex-players tainted… More »

We are not over-confident: Bailey

We are not over-confident: Bailey

Indian Premier League — George Bailey-led Kings XI Punjab will face Chennai Super Kings on Friday. More »

Taxing issue — BCCI hits roadblock

Taxing issue — BCCI hits roadblock

MoU between BCCI & its units to avoid double taxation delayed after a few decline to share details. More »

Big runs expected, with bat and ball

Big runs expected, with bat and ball

Royal Challengers Bangalore: Their main concern, once again, is the fast bowling More »

Black Caps pick rookie duo for West Indies

Black Caps pick rookie duo for West Indies

New Zealand selectors included two new caps in a 15-man Test squad named Tuesday to tour the West Indies, with injury-hit spinner Dan Vettori's future… More »

The stage is set for IPL-7 to start

The stage is set for IPL-7 to start

The Preview — Defending champions Mumbai Indians take on Kolkata Knight Riders More »

Srinivasan appeals to court to allow BCCI comeback

Srinivasan appeals to court to allow BCCI comeback

He was aggrieved by the allegations against him during the hearing. More »

Klinger on his exit from South Australia

Klinger on his exit from South Australia

Michael Klinger has revealed he felt compelled to leave South Australia after being told he would be only a fringe part of the Redbacks' plans for next season, and disputed the suggestion that he left… More »

India: cricket's Brazil

India: cricket's Brazil

They are tough to beat with a big talent base exposed to good facilities. (CYCSPL) More »

Delhi Daredevils say no to gifts

Delhi Daredevils say no to gifts

Franchises are doing their bit to refurbish the image of the tainted league. More »

India-Pakistan Test series likely in 2015

India-Pakistan Test series likely in 2015

The revival of Indo-Pak Test ties could take place in UAE. More »

Kohli hopes to end RCB trophy drought

Kohli hopes to end RCB trophy drought

'This time around we will hope to go few more steps ahead and actually get that trophy' More »

Gavaskar can help IPL regain glory

Gavaskar can help IPL regain glory

Apart from the foreign players a lot of behind-the-scene activity has taken place in selecting the Indian domestic players. More »

Tendulkar, Ganguly to promote soccer

Tendulkar, Ganguly to promote soccer

Leading Spanish club Atletico Madrid and former cricketers Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly are among the owners of eight franchises of a new Indian… More »

This isn’t my first trip to India: Neesham

This isn’t my first trip to India: Neesham

Kiwi all-rounder wants to utilise the India leg to explore the country’s tourist attractions. More »

Ishant wanted to quit ODIs

Ishant wanted to quit ODIs

Says his mother made him change his mind. More »