New Delhi, Feb 25 : Hundreds of village-level Anganwadi workers participated in a protest march here today, demanding higher wages, secure jobs and government servant status that would entitle them to pension and other post retirement benefits.
Under the banner of the Joint Platform of Action (JPA), the workers marched to Parliament.
They said that their wages were far below the minimum wages fixed by the government for unskilled labourers
"We have been working for the past 32 years as Anganwadi workers. We should get a third scale salary and helpers a fourth scale salary. Until this happens, we should at least be given a minimum wage, as we feel that we are being exploited and are not given our due and this should stop," said Hargobind Kaur, the President of the JPA.
Earlier on Thursday, representatives of Anganwadi met with Finance Minister P. Chidambaram and sought enhanced allocation for women workers and gender budgeting.
Anganwadi workers play a crucial role in providing childcare in rural India. They are trained in various aspects of childcare, health and nutrition.
There are around 1.5 million women workers on project 'Anganwadi'.