BENGALURU: Thousands of anganwadi workers from all over the state gathered at Freedom Park on Thursday, to protest against the government’s decision to begin LKG, UKG classes in government schools. They fear that they will lose their jobs, as they cater to the 3 to 6 age group. They demanded that LKG, UKG classes be started in anganwadis. Their other demands include increase in wages from Rs 10,000 to Rs 21,000 per month.
“We get our wages once in three to four months and spend from our pockets to purchase eggs, vegetables which do not get reimbursed immediately. The government does not even spend on vegetables to be given to children. It allocated money for vegetables only for pregnant and lactating women. However, this sum is a meagre Rs 2 per vegetable. We end up spending Rs 4,000 from our own pockets, and taking loans from others. Children ask for vegetables. They cannot eat just sambar and rice,” said Sumitra, one of the protestors from the Karnataka Rajya Anganwadi Karyakartheyaru Mathu Sahayakara Federation.
They called off the strike at 7 pm after K A Dayananda, Director of Women and Child Development Department, assured them that their demands would be looked into and that a meeting would be called with union representatives, the department and minister Shashikala Jolle.