Thousands of construction workers demonstrated on 30th November 2021 before district labour offices in several districts throughout country to observe All India Protest Day at the call of All India Construction Workers Federation (AICWF) against anti-labour, anti-farmer, anti-people policies of the Modi Government.
ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activists) workers are part of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) launched in 2005 to provide rural areas access to better healthcare facilities. ASHA workers form the backbone of this scheme. The scheme was initially designed to make sure that there is ‘doorstep delivery’ of health services to rural communities, and ASHA workers became the veritable foot soldiers of this scheme. The burden of reaching the homes of people in rural areas fell on the shoulders of ASHA workers.
In 2014, the Modi-led BJP government decided to dissolve the Planning Commission (which was constituted in 1951 along the lines of a socialist model of centralised planning) along with the National Development Council formed to monitor the development of sectors like agriculture, education, health and also national transport systems like Railways, Roadways and Airways. Finally, on the conclusion of the 12th Five Year Plan in 2017, the Planning Commission was dissolved and was replaced by the NITI Ayog (National Institution of Transforming India).
The Mid Day Meal scheme was initiated in Jharkhand in 2004-05. The Village Education Committees were entrusted with the responsibility of employing cooks for the scheme. In the initial phase, mere 25-30 paisas were fixed as honorarium for every meal cooked for a student. If meals for 100 school kids were cooked, the total honorarium to be paid was 25 rupees.
It has become a regular feature of the Modi Government to violate existing laws and rules applicable for protection of rights of contract workers as the Railway administration has no viable mechanism to monitor the compliance of statutory laws and rules applicable for contract workers.
Tea Workers Convention Demands Minimum Wages and Land Rights
A mammoth assembly of tea workers, hailing from most of the tea gardens of Terai, Dooars and Darjeeling Hills met at Bhanu Bhawan (Gorkha Rangmanch), Darjeeling town, in a spectacular convention on 11 September 2021. The convention was the culmination of a decision taken at a meeting of the leaders of all tea unions in Siliguri, owing allegiance to the “Joint Forum” of 37 trade unions operating in the tea sector of North Bengal.
(An abridged version of a more detailed report to be released soon)
Compensation to Families of Dalit Workers Who Were Forced to do Manual Scavenging
Agrave crisis is looming large in the jute industry of Bengal on which thousands of workers families and a vast section of jute growers depend on to earn their bread and livelihood. The century-old traditional labor-intensive industry employs more than 2.5 lakh workers. Of late, the textile ministry of central government informed the state that procurement from the industry will be slashed due to the dearth of gunny bags and 45 percent of synthetic bags will be allowed for packaging wheat in the forthcoming rabi season.
9th August 2021 (Quit India Movement Day) was observed throughout the country with the participation of lakhs of workers, farmers, women and other sections of people. The clarion call to “Free India from the Clutches of Modi-shahi, Defeat Modi-led Company Raj”, “Save India, Reclaim our Rights”, etc., reverberated across the country. To mark this occasion, AICCTU launched “Save India, Save Workers’ Rights” campaign from 1st August which culminated on 9th August with impressive participation of workers.