Anganwadi Services is a Centrally Sponsored scheme and the implementation of the scheme falls under the ambit of State Government/UT administration. The matter regarding filling up of vacant posts at various levels is taken up with the State Governments/ UT Administrations through sustained engagements/video conferences. Also, States/ UTs have been requested to adopt a uniform retirement date i.e. 30th April of each year with respect to Anganwadi Workers and Helpers to ensure proper human resource planning.
There were 13,48,135 Anganwadi workers and 10,23,068 Anganwadi Helpers in the country as on 31st December 2023.
The State-wise list of number of Anganwadi Workers and Anganwadi Helpers is placed at Annexure-I.
From 1st October, 2018, Government of India has enhanced the honorarium of AWWs at main-AWCs from Rs.3,000/- to Rs.4,500/- per month; AWWs at mini- AWCs from Rs.2,250/- to Rs.3,500/- per month; AWHs from Rs.1,500/- to Rs.2,250/- per month; and introduced performance linked incentive of Rs.250/- per month for AWHs and Rs.500/- to AWWs. In addition, States/UTs are also paying additional monetary incentives/honorarium to these functionaries from their own resources which vary from State to State. The additional Honorarium provided by the States/UTs is placed at Annexure-II. At present no proposal is under consideration to increase the honorarium of AWWs/ AWHs.
With a view to incentivize and encourage the Anganwadi Workers and Anganwadi Helpers, various steps/initiatives have been undertaken including the following:
- Promotion: As per Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0 Guidelines issued by the Ministry, promotional opportunities for Anganwadi Workers have been enhanced. 50% posts of Anganwadi Workers shall be filled by promotion of Anganwadi Helpers with 5 years of experience and 50% posts of Supervisors shall be filled by promotion of Anganwadi Workers with 5 years of experience subject to fulfilment of other criteria.
- Leave: Anganwadi Workers have been allowed paid absence of 180 days of maternity leave, paid absence on abortion/ miscarriage once for 45 days. Also, 20 days annual leaves are permissible.
- Uniform: There is a provision for set of two uniforms (saree/suit per annum) to AWW/AWH.
- Social Security Insurance Schemes: Insurance benefits have been provided to Anganwadi Workers and Helpers under Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) for life cover of Rs.2.00 lakh (covers life risk, death due to any reason) to AWWs/AWHs in the age group of 18 to 50 years and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana for accidental cover of Rs.2.00 Lakh (accidental death and permanent full disability) /Rs.1.00 Lakh (partial but permanent disability) to AWWs and AWHs in the age group of 18-59 years. Now, it has been decided to provide insurance cover under PMJJBY and PMSBY to AWWs/AWHs through their bank accounts and the funds towards premium payment released to the States/UTs on the prescribed cost sharing ratio under Anganwadi Services Scheme.
- Insurance cover under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package: Anganwadi Workers and Anganwadi Helpers who have been engaged with the Covid-19 related tasks, have been provided with insurance cover of Rs.50 lakh under “Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package” with certain conditions.
- Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-Dhan (PM-SYM): State Governments/UT Administrations have been requested to encourage eligible AWWs/AWHs to enroll themselves under the Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Mandhan (PM-SYM) Pension Scheme, which is a voluntary and contributory pension scheme for the unorganized sectors in the country to ensure old age protection.
- Retirement date: States/ UTs have been requested to adopt a uniform retirement date i.e 30th April of each year with respect to Anganwadi Workers and Helpers to ensure proper human resource planning.
- Leveraging IT through Poshan Tracker: Under Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0 (Mission Poshan 2.0) IT systems have been leveraged to strengthen and bring about transparency in delivery support systems at Anganwadi Centres. The ‘Poshan Tracker’ application was rolled out by the Ministry of Women & Child Development on 1st March, 2021 as an important governance tool. Anganwadi Workers have been technologically empowered with smartphones. The mobile application has digitized and automated the physical registers used by AWWs which has also helped in improving their quality of work. Under Poshan Abhiyaan, for the first time, a digital revolution was ushered when the Anganwadi worker was empowered with mobile devices. To capture the real time data in POSHAN Tracker application, internet connectivity charges to AWWs are provided @₹2000/- per annum per AWW.
- Government has issued orders for upgradation for mini-AWC to regular AWCs. Due to this, the honorarium of AWWs of existing mini AWCs, have increased to Rs.4,500/- p.m.
In the interim budget for 2024-25, Government has expanded the coverage of Ayushman Bharat to include all Anganwadi Workers and Helpers across the country. This will provide health coverage of up to Rs 5 lakh per family annually to all AWWs and AWHs for secondary and tertiary medical care.
This information was given by the MINISTER OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT SHRIMATI SMRITI ZUBIN IRANI in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.