Their major demand is the withdrawal of the new working hours
Demanding the withdrawal of new working hours, Karnataka State Anganwadi Workers’ and Assistants’ United Action Committee has decided to hold ‘Vidhana Soudha Chalo’ rally on November 19, said K. Somashekhar, president, Karnataka State United Anganwadi Employees’ Association.
In a release here, he said the new working hours for anganwadi workers were introduced in April 2011, in which the working hours were extended from 1.30 p.m. till 4 p.m.
He said the new timings which were being introduced only in Karnataka in the country, violated the norms of the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) which was introduced about 38 years ago.
Mr. Somashekhar said as per the IDCS norms, the anganwadi workers should work in anganwadis only between 9.30 a.m. and 1.30 p.m. in which they have to teach children and feed them supplementary diet supplied by the government. In later hours of the day, they should visit each house in their area to supply nutritious food to pregnant women and teach them methods of taking care of themselves and their baby during and after pregnancy.
“After this job, they have ample writing work to maintain records. All this work they can do only when the anganwadi timings are restricted till 1.30 p.m. But with the extended time, these workers are finding it hard to complete the job, moreover, the government is not paying extra money for the extended duty hours which is a gross violation of human rights”, he said.
Mr. Somashekhar said the new long hours weren’t even in the interest of the children as they had to sit in the classroom for seven long hours, which he felt affected the normal growth of children.
“When you make growing children sit inside a classroom for seven hours, their normal growth gets affected, at the same time, the chances of them getting malnourished increase as they were fed only some supplementary and not so healthy diet during these hours. The government should also consider this fact”, he said.
He said except in Karnataka, nowhere in the country, such timings were maintained, and added that yet, the government was claiming the system as a model to other States.
The new extended working hours were followed only in Karnataka ‘The longer hours were not even in the interest of children’
The new extended working hours were followed only in Karnataka
‘The longer hours were not even in the interest of children’