AIFAWH Working Committee has decided to observe 26 May 2017 as “Dhoka Diwas”, “Cheating Day”. On that day Narendra Modi Government is observing its third anniversary.
This BJP led NDA government came to power with majority to a single party after a long gap. It got the majority on the big media propaganda of its promise of ‘achche din’, good days. People who were fed up with the policies of the congress led UPA government under which lakhs of farmers were forced to commit suicide, workers lost jobs, agricultural labourers forced to flee from their homes voted it out.
The anganwadi workers and helpers where agitated under the UPA rule which refused to recognize them as workers, pay them minimum wages or pension. Moreover, the UPA government brought the ICDS into ‘Mission’ mode which was aimed at total privatization of the scheme. The anger against the UPA regime and the promise of ‘achche din’ and media hype got the BJP into power in May 2014.
But three years of Modi led NDA government has proved to be worse than UPA, following the same policies in increased vigor. Farmers suicide, migration, unemployment, price rise, atrocities against women and children, labour law violations .. all are continuing. Modi government in continuation to the UPA policies is selling out profit making public sector units and national assets, giving increased tax relaxation to corporate, changing the hard earned labour laws in favour of the employers and so on.
It is strongly objecting to the recommendations of the 45th Indian Labour Conference to recognise the ‘scheme workers including anganwadi workers and helpers as workers, to pay them minimum wages and provide social security and pension.
Narendra Modi became the first and only one Prime Minister of India who cut down the budget of ICDS to half in his first full budget in 2015-16. From Rs.18108 crores (Budget Estimate)in 2014-15 to a mere Rs.8245.77crores. Later on our struggles forced the government to increase the budget through supplementary grants. But in 2016-17 and 2017-18 also the budget allocations are half of that of the Planning Commission allocation for ICDS.
On Page 22 of the Manifesto for 2014 Lok Sabha Elections, BJP promises to “Review the working conditions and enhance the remuneration of Anganwadi worker's.” But, the Minister for WCD clearly told in the Parliament that it is not possible for her to increase the remuneration of anganwadi workers and helpers.
ICDS is in crisis in many states due to resource crunch due to the budget cut. In many states large scale privatisation is going on in ICDS.
In this background AIFAWH has decided to observe the third anniversary of Modi government as “Dhoka Diwas”. Please find enclosed the election Manifesto of BJP for Parliament elections 2014.
We call upon the anganwadi workers and helpers throughout the country to burn the copy of the BJP election manifesto as the symbol of the false promises, at project level on that day.
A R Sindhu