NEW DELHI : Lakhs of anganwadi workers and helpers staged protest demonstrations in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s offices across the country, demanding increase the budgetary allocation for Integrated Child Development Service (ICDS).
The protest was held under the aegis of the All India Federation of Anganwadi Workers and Helpers (AIFAWH). The anganwadi workers and helpers pressed for malnutrition free India.
General Secretary AIFAWH, Ms A R Sindhu, said that the various states are yet to pay the increase in wages announced in September 2018 to the workers. Many state governments are opening pre-schools in schools, thus taking away children from anganwadis. Direct Benefit Transfer and centralized kitchens are also being attempted in some states.
She said that being the first national level protest action after the new Government came to power, that too in the background of Muzaffarpur tragedy and also in a situation where the supplementary nutrition and salaries were not paid for months together in many states including Bihar, the response to the call was very encouraging.
In Muzaffarpur, a meeting was held in which State Anganwadi Sevika Sahayika Sangh decided to organise a year long campaign and action in Muzaffarpur against malnutrition and to strengthen ICDS titled “Freedom from malnutrition and ill health, no more deaths of children” from 14 August 2019.
AIFAWH working committee will meet on July 25-26, 2019, in Delhi to plan future activities to strengthen ICDS and to achieve demands of regularization, minimum wages and pension.