A group of Anganwadi workers in Bihar were charged with water cannons and beaten up while they were protesting outside Vidhan Sabha, demanding an honorarium hike. The police said that the workers were allegedly gheraoing the Vidhan Sabha and raising slogans against the chief minister Nitish Kumar's government, disrupting the ongoing winter session.
In the chaos, one of the workers fainted, while the police continued using the water cannon against the protestors. "Who can survive on Rs 5000? This is how we are treated when we ask for our rights. Unless we get paid like a government worker, we won't stop protesting", one of the protestors told ANI.
VIDEO | "The Bihar government is treating us worse than bonded labourers. It's an indefinite strike until our demands are met and the government gives us in writing. We are not afraid of going to jail," says an Anganwadi worker staging protest against the state government which… pic.twitter.com/XPAQBSPDDu— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) November 7, 2023
The protestors said that they would not be deterred and will continue protesting until their demands are officially met. "We are not even afraid of going to jail," one of the protestors told the media.
Reactions from different functionaries
Rashtriya Janata Dal's Manoj Jha said, "In a democracy, everyone has the right to put their demands in front of the government and the government should also pay attention to their demands. The use of water cannons is the least a government can do against the protesters. The current Bihar government takes the demands of the people seriously and discussions".
Opposition minister, Shehzaad Poonawalla of the Bharatiya Janata Party criticised the use of water cannons saying that every democratic protest is met with brutal force.
Every section of society is protesting & on the streets in Bihar over unfulfilled promises— Shehzad Jai Hind (@Shehzad_Ind) November 7, 2023
Youth seeking employment
But Jungle Raj sarkar under Nitish Babu has now become Lathi Danda sarkar & every democratic protest is met with brutal force https://t.co/5dnBlHATkQ
The Anganwadi workers said that they have five demands from the state government, of which the status of a government employee and an increase in honorarium is the utmost priority. The Anganwadi workers claimed that the Supreme Court had also directed them to give the workers the benefit of gratuity but the Bihar Government was not considering it.
Suggested Reading: Equal Maternity Rights For All Women In Armed Forces Spotlight Inclusivity