Chandigarh : Union food processing industries minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal today while welcoming the NDA government’s decision to hike honorarium of Anganwadi workers and helpers by fifty per cent and doubling the honorarium of ASHA workers, said now the Punjab government should also come to their aid and enhance their honorariums immediately.
In a statement here, Mrs Badal said she was overjoyed by the advance Diwali gift given to a section of women who were doing yeoman work providing antenatal and postnatal care for pregnant women and administering inoculation to children below six years besides other services. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi has risen to the occasion and acknowledged the contribution of Anganwadi and ASHA workers towards society. This was the need of the hour.
Even I have received many representations in this regard from my constituency and forwarded the same to the Union government and am happy that positive action has been taken on them. It is high time the Congress government in Punjab also acts in a similar manner and provides Anganwadi workers adequate immediate financial help besides mitigating other problems being faced by them”.
Mrs Badal said the Punjab government’s recent announcement to enhance the honorariums of Anganwadi workers and helpers by Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 had been dampened by the rider that this decision would be implemented from April next year. “The Congress government has reneged on all promises made to the people and this is the reason why Anganwadi workers are fearful that the government may betray them again”.
The union minister said it was condemnable that even this assurance was given by the Congress government after Anganwadi workers led a sustained six months agitation in support of their demands, including a sit in dharna in front of the office of finance minister Manpreet Badal at Bathinda. She said even now Anganwadi workers were fearful that they would be rendered redundant as the government had decided to commence pre-nursery classes in government schools.