Maharashtra Education Minister Deepak Kesarkar who was under fire for ‘threatening’ a teaching job aspirant when questioned over the much delayed recruitment process has clarified that his intention was not to threaten or insult the woman.
In a viral video, Kesarkar could be seen losing his calm over a teaching aspirant’s cross questioning about the recruitment process during a live television interview in Beed held on Sunday (November 26).
“I didn’t lose my cool. I was giving an interview and she just gate crashed into it and interrupted me. Despite this I answered her questions, but when she refused to stop, I had to tell her that this kind of indiscipline was not acceptable, especially from an aspiring teacher. Had she waited for my interview to finish, I would have responded to all her questions,” the minister said Tuesday.
Meanwhile, soon after the minister’s clarification another audio clip of a teaching job aspirant quizzing the minister about the recruitment process has also gone viral. In the phone call, which appears to be a few months old, before the Pavitra Portal, the minister loses his cool and tells the caller that he will get him disqualified.
Various politicians, including NCP leader Supriya Sule and Leader of Opposition Vijay Wadettiwar had come out against Kesarkar after the video surfaced.
The video shows the minister initially explaining to the woman the registration process and that the online portal has been opened. But he lost his calm when the woman pointed out that nothing apart from registration has happened on that portal in a process which is already delayed by five years.
He tells her that with “this kind of indiscipline she would be a misfit in a government job”. As she interrupts him again, the video shows him saying, “Don’t interrupt me otherwise I will obtain your name and get you disqualified!”
There are over 60,000 vacancies for teachers in Maharashtra. The recruitment process which began with opening applications for a qualifying exam last December has not been completed yet.
The online platform for recruitment, ‘Pavitra Portal’, was opened in September but advertisements for appointments have still not been released. According to officials, 20,000 recruitments will be made. Teacher aspirants have been protesting outside the Education Commissioner’s office in Pune since Saturday.