Anganwadi workers to launch agitation

The Anganwadi workers will launch a State-wide jail bharo andolan from Monday to protest the Maharashtra government’s failure to meet their demands. Workers from Mumbai, Palghar, Thane and Raigad will gather at Azad Maidan to raise their demands on Tuesday, when a meeting is likely to take place in Mantralaya.

Anganwadi workers have been demanding a raise in their minimum wages, pension, unemployment, and post-retirement benefits. During their protest in Mumbai on December 11, 2018, the workers had said they would hold jail bharo andolans between February 11 and 13 if their demands were not met. Since the protest, the workers’ delegation has held meetings with government officials at Mantralaya.

According to members of the Maharashtra Anganwadi Karmachari Kruti Samiti, an umbrella body of seven organisations, a three-day protest will take place in several parts of the State from Monday. A jail bharo protest will be held in front of the Pune collector’s office near Sassoon Hospital. Similar protests will take place at the district level.

Shubha Shamim, a member of Kruti Samiti, said, “Agitations have been planned in Chandrapur, Gadchiroli, Nagpur, Wardha, Amravati, Buldhana, Aurangabad, Jalna, Nanded and Beed. We are protesting before those who represent us in the government. In some talukas, protests will be held in front of panchayat samiti, tehesildar office or zilla parishad.”

Kruti Samiti officials said the Centre in September 2018 had passed a resolution that the remuneration of the anganwadi workers would be increased by ₹1,500 for teachers and administrators (or sevikas) and ₹750 for helpers. However, it has not yet been implemented. Ms. Shamim said, “The minister should keep her promise this time at least and meet us on Tuesday, as she has given us time. Many previous meetings were cancelled or postponed by the minister. They must hear out our problems.This is a genuine concern,”

M.A. Patil, another member of the Samiti, said, “In the next few days, the budget session of the State government starts and the code of conduct will come into effect for the Lok Sabha polls. The State has only a few days to act.”

Maharashtra has 97,000 major and 10,000 mini anganwadis. Each anganwadi has two workers — a teacher or administrator, and a helper. Workers receive a monthly remuneration of ₹7,000 to ₹7,500 at present and helpers receive ₹3,000.

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Printable version | Aug 6, 2021 2:42:33 AM |

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