Bhubaneswar:22/9/17; Lending support towards agitating AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy) doctors, Anganwadi workers, workers in Primary service cooperative societies, Large Area Multipurpose Cooperative Societies, the state unit of Bharatiya Janata Party today assailed the state government for threatening to invoke Odisha Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) against the agitators.
These people are rendering service at the grass-root. The agitation by them is peaceful in nature and is conformity with democratic spirit. This apart, the demands raised by them with regard to remuneration, job security and ancillary benefits are out and out logical and justified, BJP Vice President Sameer Mohanty said while briefing reporters here today.
Instead of sympathetically considering the grievances of agitators, Minister Suryo Narayan Patro has warned to invoke ESMA against them. AYUSH doctors have already been arrested. It’s seems, there is no place for peaceful strike in democratic tradition in Naveen Patnaik-led government. The bid to suppress democratic agitation is unfortunate and condemnable. The government needs to adopt restrained towards solving the grievances of striking employees, as they are the lifeline of the service-delivery system in the remotest corners of the state.
Because of inept handling of the situation, small and marginal farmers, children, pregnant women are suffering a lot. Over 70,000 anganwadi workers are playing pivotal role in providing nutrition supplement to poor women and kids. Similarly the AYUSH doctors are practically running the health service in rural pockets. The service cooperative societies are catering to small and marginal farmers’ needs. The agitation by these grass-root personnel has begun to adversely affect the priority sectors.
The pay package and other benefits extended to Anganwadi workers, AYUSH doctors and service cooperative societies’ workers are on a higher range in most of the states. Thus Odisha government must have to concede to their demands and put to end the prevailing stalemate. Arresting the agitators or resorting to coercive action is not the remedy to solve the situation that has emerged following continuing agitation by these grass-root government servants, he added.
BJP State secretary Dilip Mallik and spokesperson Sudipta Ray also attended the press conference.