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No payment received for six months: UP Anganwadi workers

After ASHAs and Mid-Day Meal cooks, now, Anganwadi workers complain of delayed wages since November 2021

Sabrangindia 06 May 2022

Daily Wages
Representational Image

Moradabad’s Rampur Anganwadi centre employees have been seething with rage since November 2021. For the last six months, the town’s Anganwadi workers and Helpers (AWWs and AWHs) have been demanding their monthly wages from the ICDS District Programme Officer (DPO).

Around April 27, the Rampur town AWWs and AWHs of around 450 centres submitted a letter to the District Commission and the DPO about the outstanding wages and Covid-relief packages to be transferred to workers’ accounts.

Employees were promised ₹ 12,000 as payment for their work as frontline workers during Covid-19. Further, the government had assured increased wages of ₹ 8,000 per month from January 2022 which would bring the pending amount to ₹ 59,000 per person.

Daily Wages

“They told us we would get the money by Eid. But it’s been four days now and we still haven’t received any money in our bank," said an AWW who wished to remain anonymous, and asked, "We have to go to work to carry out our duties regarding children’s education and nutrition. But where is our payment?”

Problems of long-pending wages are not new in Uttar Pradesh. Even before and during elections, ASHAs and Mid-Day Meal cooks had complained about long stretches of time where they did not receive any payment. In the case of MDM workers, the authorities who spoke to SabrangIndia said the department had run out of funds. Now, the ICDS claims issues with banks, another public sector entity.

Speaking to SabrangIndia, DPO Rajesh Kumar said the delay was caused by a technical problem regarding IFSC codes after the merging of Vijaya Bank with Bank of Baroda.

“This is not specific to Moradabad but applies to all regions where these banks have been affected. I am in touch with the workers and I assure you that their money will be transferred within a day or two,” said Kumar.

Daily Wages

However, far from convinced, the All India Federation of Anganwadi Workers and Helpers (AIFAWH) said that the authorities have repeatedly made these assurances with no result. Regarding IFSC codes, the women pointed out that they received ₹ 1,000 from the government for their election work and received an additional ₹ 1,200 to handle mobile expenses and continue their educational duties like attendance for online classes or surveys.

“How is it that our bank accounts work for these nominal amounts but not for our wages? All of us are extremely upset and will not hesitate to protest with chakka jam if the government does not pay our dues,” said union leader Kausarjiya.

Earlier, the Supreme Court declared that AWWs and AWHs are entitled to gratuity payment considering their six major responsibilities i.e., Supplementary Nutrition (SNP) Pre-school Non-formal Education, Nutrition & Health Education, Immunization, Health Check-up, and Referral Services.

Although the case dealt with Gujarat’s workers, the court said in its order, “It is high time that the central government and state governments take serious note of the plight of AWWs and AWHs who are expected to render such important services to the society - They are being paid very meagre remuneration and paltry benefits under an insurance scheme of the central government.”

Related:

Just gratuity not enough: Anganwadi workers
Anganwadi workers, helpers entitled to gratuity payment: SC
Over 20 cr estimated participants in workers General Strike
UP: Insufficient nutrition packages cause rift between anganwadis and community

No payment received for six months: UP Anganwadi workers

After ASHAs and Mid-Day Meal cooks, now, Anganwadi workers complain of delayed wages since November 2021

Daily Wages
Representational Image

Moradabad’s Rampur Anganwadi centre employees have been seething with rage since November 2021. For the last six months, the town’s Anganwadi workers and Helpers (AWWs and AWHs) have been demanding their monthly wages from the ICDS District Programme Officer (DPO).

Around April 27, the Rampur town AWWs and AWHs of around 450 centres submitted a letter to the District Commission and the DPO about the outstanding wages and Covid-relief packages to be transferred to workers’ accounts.

Employees were promised ₹ 12,000 as payment for their work as frontline workers during Covid-19. Further, the government had assured increased wages of ₹ 8,000 per month from January 2022 which would bring the pending amount to ₹ 59,000 per person.

Daily Wages

“They told us we would get the money by Eid. But it’s been four days now and we still haven’t received any money in our bank," said an AWW who wished to remain anonymous, and asked, "We have to go to work to carry out our duties regarding children’s education and nutrition. But where is our payment?”

Problems of long-pending wages are not new in Uttar Pradesh. Even before and during elections, ASHAs and Mid-Day Meal cooks had complained about long stretches of time where they did not receive any payment. In the case of MDM workers, the authorities who spoke to SabrangIndia said the department had run out of funds. Now, the ICDS claims issues with banks, another public sector entity.

Speaking to SabrangIndia, DPO Rajesh Kumar said the delay was caused by a technical problem regarding IFSC codes after the merging of Vijaya Bank with Bank of Baroda.

“This is not specific to Moradabad but applies to all regions where these banks have been affected. I am in touch with the workers and I assure you that their money will be transferred within a day or two,” said Kumar.

Daily Wages

However, far from convinced, the All India Federation of Anganwadi Workers and Helpers (AIFAWH) said that the authorities have repeatedly made these assurances with no result. Regarding IFSC codes, the women pointed out that they received ₹ 1,000 from the government for their election work and received an additional ₹ 1,200 to handle mobile expenses and continue their educational duties like attendance for online classes or surveys.

“How is it that our bank accounts work for these nominal amounts but not for our wages? All of us are extremely upset and will not hesitate to protest with chakka jam if the government does not pay our dues,” said union leader Kausarjiya.

Earlier, the Supreme Court declared that AWWs and AWHs are entitled to gratuity payment considering their six major responsibilities i.e., Supplementary Nutrition (SNP) Pre-school Non-formal Education, Nutrition & Health Education, Immunization, Health Check-up, and Referral Services.

Although the case dealt with Gujarat’s workers, the court said in its order, “It is high time that the central government and state governments take serious note of the plight of AWWs and AWHs who are expected to render such important services to the society - They are being paid very meagre remuneration and paltry benefits under an insurance scheme of the central government.”

Related:

Just gratuity not enough: Anganwadi workers
Anganwadi workers, helpers entitled to gratuity payment: SC
Over 20 cr estimated participants in workers General Strike
UP: Insufficient nutrition packages cause rift between anganwadis and community

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