The Uttar Pradesh government has responded to claims by teachers’ unions in state that 1,621 teachers and support staff have died of Covid-19 while on panchayat poll duty in UP. Countering the claim, the state government has said that only three teachers died during panchayat election duty. The Primary Teachers Association had released a list claiming that 1,621 teachers, instructors, shiksha mitras and employees have died due to Covid-19 in all 75 districts of Uttar Pradesh while they were on duty during the state panchayat elections. The Teacher’s Union had also raised questions over the state government’s decision to hold panchayat elections while the state was reeling under the second wave of the pandemic. The union had argued that the election could have been postponed in view of the surge in the growing number of infections and that it resulted in the deaths of 1,621 employees.
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