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Midday meal workers threaten strike over low and irregular honorarium

by Rinku Khumukcham
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Midday meal workers threaten strike over low and irregular honorarium

IT News
Imphal, June 15:

All Manipur Midday Meal Workers’ Union has threatened to strike over the low and irregular honorarium paid to them. Addressing media representatives at the Manipur Press Club in Majorkhul today, the union’s General Secretary, Arambam Thoi, highlighted the grievances faced by midday meal workers across the state.
Thoi expressed profound dismay at the deteriorating conditions confronting over 2000 union members, whom he described as the most exploited among all scheme workers in Manipur. He sharply criticized the reduction in their honorarium from Rs. 1500 to Rs. 1000, attributing this decrease to the state government’s withdrawal of Rs. 500 previously included in the payment, thereby leaving only Rs. 1000 provided by the central government.
“We were initially hopeful when Prime Minister Modi promised an honorarium of Rs. 10,000. However, no such increment has been realized,” lamented Arambam Thoi. He further revealed that workers have now been informed they will receive only Rs. 1000, with the option to resign if dissatisfied.
Thoi also drew attention to the irregularities in receiving the Rs. 1000 honorarium and criticized authorities for their dismissive response when workers sought regularization similar to that of teachers. “When we approached the ZEO for parity in employment conditions, they shrugged off responsibility, claiming it was beyond their control,” he added.
Comparing the situation in other states, Thoi highlighted stark disparities: “In Kerala, workers receive Rs. 16,000, in Karnataka Rs. 3,700, and in Assam Rs. 2,500, significantly higher than our current situation in Manipur.” He further noted the irregularity in payment schedules and revealed that the union has submitted memorandums to both the Chief Minister and the central government in pursuit of fair compensation.
Consequently, Arambam Thoi announced the union’s decision to initiate a strike starting from May 25 to demand a substantial increase in their honorarium, unless an order is issued to increase their honorarium by May 24. He stressed that during the strike, they expect authorities not to hire replacement workers, urging solidarity and support for their cause from all quarters.

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Imphal Times is a daily English newspaper published in Imphal and is registered with Registrar of the Newspapers for India with Regd. No MANENG/2013/51092


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