by Urvat Il Wuska
SRINAGAR: The Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday held a protest demanding an immediate halt to changes in labour laws.
Scores of Asha and Anganwadi workers holding placards assembled here at press colony and shouted the slogans in favour of their demands.
While demanding an immediate halt to changes in labour laws, Abdul Rashid Najar CITU leader said, “There is no regularization policy for the ASHAs, Aganwadi , daily and casual workers, working for several years. Many labour rights are altered by the central government due to which there is continued job loses and wage cuts.”
“So we demand that temporary workers should get permanent jobs,” Najar said.
“The Unemployment rate which had been the worst in 45 years in 2019 is rising with a speed never seen before. The government is totally in denial mode rather twisting the facts to paint a picture of everything being normal and that the economy is reviving at full scale. The so-called package of the revival of 20 lakh crores had been exposed by the economists as practically fraudulent manipulation in the name of relief to the poor whereas not even 1% of that Rs 20 lakh crore has flown to common people,” he said.
“Despite working for years, the government is not addressing our demands,” said Mubeena who was part of the protest, adding that “How can we run our daily lives on rupees two thousand so till government make us permanent we must have Rs 21000 Minimum salary.”
“We are working at the cost of our lives with the COVID patients but still the government is not paying attention towards our problems,” said the protesting ASHA workers.
The protesters demanded free universal healthcare for all, 10-kg free food grains per person per month to all needy for 6 months, Rs 7500 per month for all non-tax- paying families for next six months or unemployment allowance.
Besides they also demanded enacting and implementing urban employment guarantee, the Ordinances/executive orders on Essential Commodities, Farm Trade, Electricity Act and Labour Laws’, EIA and National Digital Health Mission, withdrawal of NEP 2020, no Privatisation of PSEs and Services.
They also demanded safety gear and PPEs to all front line workers including ASHAs, Anganwadi employees, NHM workers etc on COVID 19 duty, Rs.50 lakhs insurance, risk allowance, implementation of the recommendations of 45th and 46th ILC for regularization of scheme workers as workers, withdrawal of the proposals for privatization of basic services such as electricity, health (including hospitals), nutrition (including ICDS and MDMS) and education, stopping privatisation of PSEs and Services.
The protestors also urged the administration to release the pending wages of casual/ seasonal and need-based labourers.