Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir family welfare, Mother and Child Health (MCH) and Immunization employees here on Monday staged a protest demonstration seeking release of their long pending wages and merger of Plan and non-plan employees under central sponsored scheme.
The employees under the banner of Female Multipurpose Workers Association assembled here in Pratap Park and later marched towards press enclave Srinagar. The protesting employees also sought merger of plan (technical) employees with the non-plan (non-technical) employees of central sponsored scheme besides release of salary pending from six months.
Association vice president, Mehmooda Begum said that, “The government of India has released Rs 20 crores for salary dispersion under the Central sponsored Scheme but we (Plan /Technical employees) are excluded under this quota,” she said.
The protesting employees allege the administration of “favouritism” and “gender discrimination” regarding the release of salaries of non-plan employees and holding the salaries of plan employees of the same department.
“We are nearly three thousand employees on strike from last three weeks and we are not being heard despite our male colleagues in non-technical branch received the salaries,” they said. “Clear is the reason that merger with non-technical branch and salaries are held just because we are women employees,” they added.
“On this Eid-ul-Azha we do not have a single penny to fulfil our financial needs, we are forced to borrow money, take daily needs on credit, and even now shopkeepers refuse to give items on credit.” said a group of protesting employees.
Kulsum Bano an employee said that we on this Eid we fail to contribute financially to our families. “As our salaries are held even on these festivals our pockets are empty and families are starving by which we are under mental frustration and trauma,” she said.
Alleging State administration of “gender discrimination” Bano said that “this Eid celebration is for male government employees not for the female employees of the family welfare department,” she added.
The employees include Female Multi-Purpose Health Workers, nursing orderlies, field workers; clerical staff which she said is “backbone” of rural health system. Their strike has “badly” affected immunization and home-based care for expecting mothers in peripheries, Mehmooda told Kashmir Reader.
The women employees of the family welfare department appeal governor administration to intervene and fulfil their demand; else they threatened to go for indefinite strike.