Coaching Centres call for 2-day strike

Coaching Centres call for 2-day strike

The Association asked the government to fulfil its promises by implementing the long pending guidelines.

 Alleging harassment by way of imposition of new taxes and frequent raids by officials, the Coaching Centres Association (CCA) of Kashmir has called for two day valley wide strikes in its member institutes.

The Association asked the government to fulfil its promises by implementing the long pending guidelines.

“To protest against the government policy towards coaching centres, we have decided to go on general strike for two days (Jan 28, 29),” said Lateef Masoodi, spokesman CCA after a meeting of representatives of coaching centres in a local hotel in Lal Chowk here.

The Association accused the government of employing different tactics to close the private coaching centres.

“Ours is the only sector that is being raided by police, tax men, officials of education department and district administrations,” said Masoodi. “They don’t register us, term us illegal and then raid us on one pretext or the other. It is contempt to education and a case of pure harassment.”

 The CCA said government was flouting its own rules and Standard Operating Procedure (SOP). “Only a team nominated by Director Education can raid coaching centres but here every official including policemen barge into classroom full of girl students,” said Masoodi. “We are not against any law but everything has a set SOP which needs to be followed.”

“Without registering our institutes, they are asking us to pay 10.5 percent service tax just like an industry. Plus they also order us to provide free education to 10 percent students as a social service,” said Masoodi. “That amounts to 20.5 percent of cost escalation for students and post-floods when the economic condition of students has deteriorated, the private education will be unaffordable to majority of students.”

 The Association asked the government to declare coaching centres either an industry or a social service. “Declare us industry and we will pay tax, but we can’t provide free education. Or pronounce us social service and we will happily provide free education. In that case government can’t force tax on social service sector,” the CCA spokesman said, adding that “such a policy is not in vague anywhere in India and it is only coaching centres of Kashmir that are being attacked.”

The government had framed rules vide order No: 435-Edi of 2010 dated April 30, 2010 under the Regulation of Private Coaching Centre Rules-2010 to regulate the functioning/performance of private coaching centres in the State. 

Masoodi alleged that government itself is sitting on those rules even as coaching centres are ready to follow them.