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NHM employees stage rally for their demands in Jammu

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Jammu, Jan 28: Hundreds of striking National Health Mission (NHM) employees Monday took out a rally in Jammu in support of their various demands, including regularisation of their services.

The employees who are on strike for the past fortnight assembled at the Exhibition ground here and later took out a rally, raising slogans against the Governor administration for its alleged failure to address their issues, officials said.

However, the policemen who were deployed in strength at Jewal Chowk stopped the rally and persuaded them to return.

"We are on strike for the past two weeks but no one from the governor administration visited us to listen to our demands. We were forced to come on the roads to push for our demands, including regularisation of our services and equal pay for equal work," a woman protester said.

She said they are going to intensify their protest in the coming days if their demands are not met.

In nearby PHE headquarters at the B C Road, CP workers, ITI trained and need-based workers also held a demonstration for release of their pending wages and necessary steps for their regularisation.

The PHE workers are on strike since September last year and are regularly staging demonstrations in support of their demands.

Meanwhile, Anganwadi workers and helpers association president Suman Suri served a 15-day ultimatum for redressal of their grievances and said "if the administration failed, we will come on the roads once again".

The Anganwadi workers and helpers called off their six month-long agitation in July last year on the assurance of the Governor administration which later enhanced their monthly honorarium by Rs 500 for workers and Rs 400 for helpers.

"The administration played a crude joke with us by raising a meagre amount, ignoring our demand for a hike in the honorarium from Rs 3,600 to Rs 10,000 for workers and Rs 1,800 to Rs 6,000 for helpers," Anganwadi workers and helpers association president Suman Suri told reporters here.

"If our genuine demands were not met within 15 days, we will once again come out on the roads," he said.

Besides hike in honorarium, he said the major demands of the workers include implementation of the pension scheme, release of pending salaries and gratuity of Rs 2 lakh for workers and Rs 1 lakh for helpers on retirement.

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