Frontline workers including the Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) workers and Sanitation Workers working with Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), popularly known as Paurakarmikas are serving the city as ‘Corona Warriors’ in these turbulent times and have staged multiple protests across the city.
They have demanded better safety measures and protection and better working conditions and timely payment of their wages amidst the coronavirus crisis.
The paurakarmikas are protesting against the government’s total disregard and apathy towards their health and thereby their lives itself. While the lives and livelihoods of the people have been completely devastated for the last 3 months owing to the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak, they have been serving the city while putting their own lives under immense risk. However, they have not been provided with adequate facilities by the state. Even after multiple letters to the BBMP, they have neither been provided with protective gear, medical checkup nor have been covered under the insurance schemes. Earlier, their worker’s union had written to and thereby demanded that a Standard Operating Protocol (SOP) be formulated for the paurakarmikas.
Dasarahallinews.com has reported about the protests that paurakarimkas undertook in Yeshwantpur constituency of Bengaluru.
The absence of any concern for the health of the paurakarmikas and ASHA workers on part of the government and the BBMP has pushed them to the risks of being infected by COVID-19. Therefore, they have demanded timely and systematic provisioning of much-needed protective gear including full PPE kits, facemasks, and hand gloves to be able to continue their works in these turbulent times. They have also demanded strict steps in the collection of waste from houses under containment zones, daily health check-ups, and provisioning of sick leaves. The paurakarmikas are worried about health and safety of their family members too.
They have also demanded that at least one month’s salary be paid in advance to them so as to provide for their subsistence. They have also demanded that the paurakarmikas who aren’t able to report to work as they live in containment zones be provided with full wages.
ASHA Workers, on the other hand, have continued their long-drawn demand that they are provided with an honorarium of not less than Rs. 12000 per month. ASHA workers in the state are undertaking risks to ensure that the facilities provided for the children below age 6 and their mothers are reaching them in these testing times. They have also been asked to undertake other Corona-related tasks as and when required.
Read about: Patanjali Coronil: An attempt to defame Ayurveda