New Delhi: Bhartiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) affiliate Akhila Bharatiya Anganwadi Karmachari Mahasangh (ABAKM) on Monday demanded declaration of anganwadi workers and helpers as government employees, provision of social security for them and their promotion as supervisors.
ABAKM, which held a demonstration at Jantar Mantar today, also met Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya and Women and Child Development Minister Meneka Gandhi with their charter of demands and said that they were assured by the ministers that their issues will be taken up soon.
Many members of BMS which is an affiliate to RSS also took part in the demonstration.
"These workers that have been protecting the mothers and children from malnutrition since last 39 years have themselves became victims of malnutrition due to abysmally low wages and absence of any social security," said B N Rai, President, BMS.
Terming the renumeration of workers as 'Apaman Dhan' and not 'Mandhan' (honorarium), ABAKM officials said that at mast of anganwadi centers, the payment is delayed for over 6 months.
General Secretary BMS, Virjesh Upadhyay, alleged that the government is contemplating to privatise anganwadi centres or hand them over to NGOs.
"With the connivance of corporate lobby, the government is contemplating to privatise anganwadi centres or hand them over to NGOs," he said while giving the example where such an attempt by Maharastra Government in Jalgaon district had derailed the otherwise smooth operations forcing the government to take back the operations.
In its memorandum of demands submitted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Minster of Women and Child Development Menaka Gandhi, ABAKM has demanded declaring the anganwadi workers and helpers as government employees and payment of wages Rs 10,000 and Rs 7,000 respectively as interim relief.
They have also demanded that provision of social security measures like gratuity, pension to be given to them, promotion of anganwadi workers as supervisors and protection against the threats and harassment by supervisors and departmental officials.
Zonal Organising Secretary (North circle) BMS Pawan Kumar
said that Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya has assured that he would take up the matter and even talk to the Woman and Child Development minister.
Left affiliated All India Federation of Anganwadi Workers and Helpers (AIFAWH) had also held a march to Parliament on November 21 to protest against "privatisation and handing over" the anganwadi centres to the corporate.
AIFAWH which had collected nearly two crore signatures from people all over the country had submitted these signatures to the Prime Minister's Office.