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Maharashtra: Strike ends, ASHAs will receive increase of Rs 1,500 per month, smartphone




Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) ended their nine-day strike on Wednesday after the state government agreed to increase their monthly fee by Rs 1,500 and for block facilitators by Rs 1,700.

Every ASHA employee will also have a talented smartphone.

On Wednesday, Health Minister Rajesh Tope held a meeting with senior health officials and ASHA representatives, after which the strike was canceled.

Tope announced that ASHA will be given Rs 1,000 increase in fixed monthly salary and Rs 500 as Covid-19 allowance. Block facilitators will receive an increase of Rs 1,200 per month and Rs 500 as Covid-19 assistance.

The fixed monthly income for ASHAs during the pandemic is planned to reach Rs 6,500, in addition to the program-based financial incentives they receive.

The fixed monthly income for the block facilitators is set to exceed Rs 12,200. Maharashtra has 68,297 ASHA and 3,570 block facilitators.

In addition, the government has agreed to pay Rs 200 per day for immunization work to ASHAs. The pending payment will be given to them for mobilizing villagers to be vaccinated, said Shubha Shamim, state secretary of the Indian Union Center.

The state had set a monthly salary of 2,000 Rs in addition to the Union government salary of 2,000 Rs for ASHAs last year.

This year, ASHAs have come up with a list of demands from more protection against Covid-19 infection to hospital bed reservations and better payments.

They claimed they were working eight hours a day and working Covid-19 had added to their burden. On June 15, they launched an indefinite strike across the country.

Raju Desle, who attended Wednesday’s meeting on behalf of ASHAs, said that in addition to the immediate salary increase, the health minister also assured that the fixed monthly payment would increase by another Rs 500 per month from 1 July 2022.

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