Gahlot assures protesting state anganwadi workers of addressing grievances soon

- March 11, 2022
| By : PTI |

A day after taking over as the Women and Child Development Minister, Kailash Gahlot on Thursday assured agitating anganwadi workers of addressing their grievances soon.

File Photo (Courtesy: Delhi State Anganwadi and Helpers Union)

The Delhi State Anganwadi Workers and Helpers Union (DSAWHU) has been on a strike since January 31 to demand increase in honorarium, respectable working hours and status as government employees.

“Today visited anganwadi centre in Humayunpur with officials, met supervisors, CDPOs and assistants and listened to all their problems. Under the leadership of CM Shri @ArvindKejriwal, together we will ensure a better future for the children of Delhi, Gahlot said in a tweet.

“Today I also visited anganwadi centre at Nizamuddin. Met all Anganwadi workers and local women at the center and got to know about their suggestions. I want to assure everyone that @ArvindKejriwal government will listen to your grievances and solve them soon,” he said in another tweet.

Declaring services rendered by anganwadi workers as essential , Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal had on Wednesday imposed the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) for six months, prohibiting them for going on a strike following which the DSAWHU had temporarily suspended the strike.

However, the union has claimed that workers were made to sign apology letters on Thursday when they reported to work.

“At some centres, workers were asked to write letters stating that they were misguided by the DSAWHU in joining the strike. Some workers refused to sign the letters,” said a DSAWHU member. There was no immediate reaction from the government on this.

Meanwhile, the DSAWHU has said it will approach the court against LG’s directive and called it a result of the nexus between the ruling Aam Aadmi Party and Bharatiya Janata Party. They also vowed to boycott the two parties in the MCD polls.

Meanwhile, the DSAWHU will hold a press conference on Friday to discuss their future course of action.

The Delhi government had raised the honorarium to Rs 12,720 besides increasing conveyance and communication allowance to Rs 1,500 in case of anganwadi workers last month.

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. However, DSAWHU has not been in agreement with the hike.

According to AAP government officials, salaries of anganwadi workers have increase by up to two-and-a-half-times but they were still protesting due to which people are suffering.

“Salaries of anganwadi workers have increased by up to two-and-a-half times since the Aam Aadmi Party came to power in Delhi. The Kejriwal government is paying Rs 12,720 to anganwadi workers and Rs 6,810 to anganwadi helpers per month. In comparison to BJP-ruled states, the Kejriwal government pays 30 per cent more to anganwadi workers,” said an official requesting anonymity.

At present, the anganwadi workers of Delhi are getting an honorarium of Rs 12,720 per month, whereas in other states, only Rs 6,500 to 7,000 is being given to them. Similarly, the honorarium of anganwadi helpers is also much higher in Delhi as compared to other states, said the official.

The number of anganwadi centres in Delhi is around 10,755. On an average, 11,34,651 children (zero to six years) depend on these centres every month to get government services. The number of pregnant and nursing mothers availing the services at these centres every month is around 1,85,062, said the official.

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