Odisha’s Septuagenarian MP Demands ‘Respectable Pay’ For ASHA, Anganwadi Workers In Lok Sabha

New Delhi: BJD MP from Aska Pramila Bisoi on Thursday demanded a hike in remuneration for ASHA and Anganwadi workers.

Speaking in Lok Sabha during Zero Hour, Bisoi said women working at the grassroots should be given due respect and the recent hike of Rs 4,500 per month in remuneration was not enough. “I demand a hike in the remuneration of ASHA and Anganwadi workers to Rs 15,000 per month and that of Anganwadi helpers to Rs 12,000 per month,” she said.

As Bisoi rose to address the House, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla introduced her as someone who has transformed the lives of women through self-help groups (SHGs) in her area before being elected as a parliamentarian.

The 70-year-old, who was the the face of BJD’s flagship Mission Shakti programme, stood out in the House with the pallu of her Sambalpuri saree draped over her head and nosepins gleaming on her face. She had won the election from Aska Lok Sabha seat by over 2 lakh votes.

She began her speech in Odia by wishing everyone on the auspicious occasion of Rath Yatra and then raised the issue of women empowerment. “Jai Jagannath. Jai Odisha,” she concluded.

During a video bridge interaction with ASHA, Anganwadi and Auxiliary Nurse Midwife (ANM) workers across the country in September 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced that honorarium for Anganwadi workers would be raised by 60 per cent and the remuneration for ASHA workers doubled from October 2018.

Following this, the remuneration of Anganwadi workers went up to Rs 4,500 from Rs 3,000, and those receiving Rs 2,200 got Rs 3,500. The financial support received by Anganwadi helpers went up to Rs 2,250 from Rs 1,500.

Additionally, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had approved a monthly performance-linked incentive of Rs 250 for Anganwadi helpers for facilitating proper functioning of Anganwadi Centres (AWCs).

The Odisha government implemented the hike in monthly remuneration in January 2019, though it had come into effect retrospectively from October 1, 2018.


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