Dibrugarh: Teaching is one of the noblest of professions and teachers are undoubtedly respected across the world for shaping young minds and creating the citizens of tomorrow. However, the plight of an unpaid retired school teacher hailing from Dibrugarh in Upper Assam has revealed that life is not all roses for the teachers and a cushy salary and comfort remains a pipedream for many who entered this noble profession hoping to make a change.
Talking to reporters, Kanteswar Sonowal revealed that he served as a teacher of the Jamiya ME School in Dibrugarh from 1987 to 2017. During his tenure as a teacher, he was afflicted with heart disease and was shifted to the NEIGRIHMS in Shillong for treatment. "My heart was operated upon there, and I got relief from my ailment after both members of the public and government pitched in. However, that was not enough as I worked as an unpaid teacher and had nothing of myself," he said.
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Sonowal, who lives in a ramshackle hut in Dibrugarh's Moran, says that now, he has to buy medicines on a regular basis, which he can barely afford. "If someone can help me out, well and good. I am really struggling to make ends meet due to poverty."
The retired teacher from Assam has also lamented that in spite of his pitiale state, he has been largely neglected by the ruling administration. Neither the local MLA (Chakradhar Gogoi) nor the CEM of the Sonowal Kachari Autonomous Council have shown any interest in his health. The former teacher has termed this as "most unfortunate."
Sonowal, like many other teachers from Assam, finds himself a victim of poverty amid these uncertain times when the COVID-19 crisis has already hit the Indian economy pretty hard. Despite years of hard work and toil, these teachers find themselves without economic stability and victims of uncertainty and poverty. Impoverished professionals like this teacher still yearn for "better days" promised to them by those in power through glitzy television commercials and soaring musical numbers. The question is, will those days ever come?
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