In one of the biggest ever mobilisation of women workers in the Delhi, on 21 November 2014, twenty three thousand Anganwadi Workers and Helpers working in the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme from 21 states and UTs – Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, Pondicherry Rajasthan, Telengana, Uttarakhand , Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal Marched to Parliament in a colourful procession. The march was organised by the All India Federation of Anganwadi Workers and Helpers (AIFAWH) affiliated to the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU).
On a memorandum to the Prime Minister of India on the demands of
• No privatisation of ICDS in any form including handing over to NGOs, Corporates, Self Help Groups etc
• Make adequate financial allocations for ICDS
• Improve infrastructure in anganwadi centres
• Regularise all anganwadi workers and helpers, provide them minimum wages and social security benefits
. AIFAWH collected 16.4 million signatures from the beneficiaries as well as the workers.
The rally was addressed by A K Padmanabhan, President, Tapan Sen General Secretary CITU, Sitaram Yechury MP, Member Polit Bureau and the leader of the Parliamentary Party of CPI (M), K Hemalata, Secretary, Ranjana Nirula, Treasurer CITU, Neelima Maitra, President, and A R Sindhu, General Secretary, AIFAWH.
For the first time, the police was forced to take the delegation to the PMO (Prime Minister’s Office) for submission of the signatures.
The rally was also addressed by Hannan Mollah, General Secretary, AIKS, Suneet Chopra, Joint Secretary AIAWU, Jagmati Sangwan, General Secretary AIDWA and Avoy Mukherjee, General Secretary, DYFI.
The rally was concluded with a declaration of countrywide protest actions in case the Prime Minister is not discussing with the federation and the demands are not met with.
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