Representational Image: WikimediaCommons

Cooks of the midday meal in government schools in Manipur announced continuation of their cease work strike pressing the state government to clear their pending honorarium for 19 months.

Addressing a press conference in Imphal on April 11, president of the Midday Meal Workers’ Union Manipur, N Indrani Devi said that the cooks were not paid for the 19 consecutive months.

“Instead of addressing their demand, the state government asked them to resume duty while informing that honorarium for two months will be cleared shortly,” she said.

She added that they will not accept the offer of the government to clear the honorarium of the midday meal cooks for only two months and “will not resume duty until and unless the honorarium for the 19 months is not cleared”.

The union president said that while offering only two months honorarium, headmasters of some schools threatened the cooks to remove them from the service if they do not attend duty. According to the union president, the midday meal cooks are receiving only Rs 3,000 per months as honorarium for their service.

“On many occasions, the state government had assured hiking the honorarium but this never translated into action,” she added.

According to Indrani, in other states of the country, the honorarium has been hiked on many occasions and in some states, the midday meal cooks were paid Rs 12,000 per month.

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