Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday announced a big hike in remuneration for ASHA and Anganwadi workers. The announcement, which will be effective from next month, was made during a video bridge interaction with lakhs of ASHA, Anganwadi and ANM workers today. PM Modi also announced the doubling of routine incentives given by the Union Government to ASHA workers. Additionally, all ASHA workers and their helpers would be provided free insurance cover under Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana and Prime Minister Suraksha Bima Yojana, Modi said.

The government’s pay hike decision is expected to benefit over 25 lakh Anganwadi workers and helpers across the country. 

The honorarium given to Anganwadi workers has been increased significantly. Those receiving Rs 3000 so far, would now receive Rs 4500. Similarly, those receiving Rs 2200, would now get Rs 3500. The honorarium for Anganwadi helpers has also been increased from Rs 1500 to Rs 2250, according to a government release.

Additional incentives for Anganwadi workers and helpers using techniques such as Common Application Software (ICDS-CAS) have been announced. The incentives ranging from Rs. 250 to Rs. 500, would be based on performance, the government said. 

PM Modi today interacted with teams of 3 As – the ASHA worker, Anganwadi worker and ANM (Auxiliary Nurse Midwife) from across the country. He praised their efforts to work together, to use innovative means and technology, to improve the delivery of health and nutrition services and achieve the goal of the POSHAN Abhiyan – the reduction of malnutrition in the country.

Commenting on the pay raise announced for the women workers, Women and Child development minister Maneka Gandhi said, “This will boost their morale and help improve the delivery of services by the frontline workers and will  in turn help to achieve the goal of Poshan Abhiyan.”

As many as 13.63 lakh Anganwadi Centres (AWCs) of the 14 lakh AWCs sanctioned across the country are operational, Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Dr Virendra Kumar had told the Lok Sabha in July this year. 

In May 2015, Maneka Gandhi had informed the Rajya Sabha that as many as 24.58 lakh women (12.93 lakh Anganwadi Workers (AWWs) and 11.65 lakh Anganwadi Helpers (AWHs)) were working in the 13.42 lakh AWCs running across India.