Delhi Anganwadi protests: Delhi Government responds to the grievances

Anganwadi workers gather to protest in large numbers at civil lines on February 22 in New Delhi. (Photo by Salman Ali/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

The Delhi government is paying the country’s highest amount of honorarium and allowances to Anganwadi workers and helpers in the city, sources in the government claimed on Sunday.

The Anganwadi workers are paid monthly Rs 12,720 in Delhi while Rs 12,200 is the pay in Tamil Nadu, Rs 11,811 in Haryana, Rs 10,500 in Telangana, Rs 10,000 in Kerala, Rs 10,000 in Madhya Pradesh, Rs 9,500 in Punjab, Rs 8,666 in Maharashtra, Rs 8,250 in West Bengal, Rs 8,000 in Uttar Pradesh, Rs 8,000 in Karnataka, Rs 7,800 in Gujarat, Rs 7,500 in Odisha, Rs 7,000 in Andhra Pradesh, Rs 7,000 in Bihar and Rs 6,500 in Chhattisgarh, as per government sources.

The Arvind Kejriwal-led dispensation had last week decided to increase the monthly honorarium and allowance of Anganwadi workers and helpers, who are on strike for the past several days.

The government has raised the honorarium to Rs 12,720 besides increasing conveyance and communication allowance to Rs 1,500 in case of Anganwadi workers.

The monthly honorarium of helpers has been increased from Rs 4,839 to Rs 5,610. They will also get Rs 1,200 as conveyance and communication allowance.

“The Kejriwal government is paying the highest amount of monthly wages to Anganwadi workers throughout India. Their monthly wages have increased up to two-and-half times since the AAP came to power in Delhi,” as per the government sources. “The Delhi government is paying 30% higher wages than what is being paid by BJP-ruled states like Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Karnataka,” the sources added. They also claimed that Anganwadi workers are getting “less” salaries in Congress-ruled states as compared to Delhi.

In view of rising inflation, the Kejriwal government increased wages for Anganwadi workers from Rs 9,678 to Rs 12,720, and those of helpers from Rs 4,839 to Rs 6,810. However, the striking Anganwadi workers rejected the claims of the AAP government.

“The government is lying. Anganwadi workers are being paid Rs 14,000 in Tamil Nadu, Rs 13,650 in Tamil Nadu and about Rs 12,000 in Kerala monthly. Besides they get other benefits like provident fund,” Shivani Kaul, president, Delhi State Anganwadi Workers and Helpers Union alleged.

She said the protest by Anganwadi workers and helpers will continue till the Delhi government meets their demand for monthly wages of Rs 25,000 for workers and Rs 20,000 for helpers and other service benefits like pension and Provident Fund (PF).

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