Joint Struggle of ASHA workers in Uttarakhand

As an encouraging development for the struggle of ASHA workers in Uttarakhand state, the ASHA unions led by AICCTU and CITU, major unions in the state, have given a joint call for a prolonged struggle. On the joint call of AICCTU led “Uttarakhand ASHA Health Workers’ Union” and CITU led “Uttarakhand Swasthya Karyakatri Union” ASHA workers on 23rd July 2021 staged protest demonstrations and sit-ins at Block HQs throughout the state including important centres like Nainital, Haldwani, Almora, Dehradun, Pithoragarh and submitted memorandum of their demands addressed to the Chief Minister of the state.  Through their demonstrations they warned the govt. of jointly intensifying the movement including holding an indefinite strike if their demands are not met. They declared to hold demonstrations on 30th July at District HQs as the next phase of their struggle.

Condemning the state govt. as anti-worker, anti-women, “Uttarakhand ASHA Health Workers’ Union” in its statement said that this govt. is totally insensitive to the plight and sufferings of ASHA workers, who are being treated like slaves despite their role of frontline workers and sacrifices they have made in fight against Corona. The govt. is not even honouring its commitments - for example, announcement made by CM this year on 8th March (International Women Day) to pay Rs. 10,000 as Covid allowance to all ASHA workers has not seen yet the light of the day. The statement has warned the govt. that without Corona allowance, ASHA workers will not attend Corona duty.

Some of the major demands included in the memorandum are to ensure Rs. 10,000 as monthly Corona allowance/ Pandemic Pay for 6 months, Rs. 10 lakh Health Insurance and Rs. 50 lakh Life Insurance coverage, without the condition of direct/indirect engagement, give status of govt. employees and Rs. 21,000 as minimum monthly pay to all ASHA workers.