The Meghalaya Accredited Social Health Activists Workers’ Union (MASHAWU) has decided to intensify their agitation from November 27 to pressurise the state government to give in to their demands.
“We have ended our first phase of agitation by holding peaceful rallies in all districts and in the second phase we will sit for an indefinite strike opposite the state secretariat until the government gives ear to our demands,” union President Mary June Myrsing said after the meeting of the executive committee held at Mawlai Motsyiar today.
The ASHA workers said that the state government continues to turn a deaf ear to their to their demands and the executive committee of the union finds that even Health Minister Ampareen Lyngdoh is not concerned over their plight.
When told that the Health Minister said that the doors of the government are always open for dialogue with the aggrieved ASHA workers of the state, Myrsing said that her invitation was informal and felt that the latter should take the initiative and not the minister.
“This shows that she is willing to talk only if the ASHA workers initiate a dialogue with the government and on her part we feel that she is not willing to take up our issues on her own,” she stated.
According to her, if Lyngdoh really wants to solve the issue she should have sent an official invitation for talks. “But her invitation is only through news reports,” she added.
The ASHA president in turn threw the ball in the government’s court by saying that if the minister wants to have a dialogue with the workers then they too are ready for talks.
Meanwhile, she informed that only members of the executive committee will take part in the scheduled indefinite strike. However, if the government remains adamant then from November 28 all ASHA workers of the state will turn up at the venue.
The ASHAs have been demanding enhancement in their fixed honorarium from Rs 2,000 to Rs 5,000.