SEWA’s First Sammelan (Mass Meeting) of Bidi Workers in Ajmer City
SEWA organized its first Sammelan (mass meeting) of Bidi workers in Ajmer, Rajasthan on 31st March 2011. The Sammelan brought together around 1500 women bidi workers to voice their problems before the concerned authorities. A Memorandum was presented to Shri Benjamin Prakash, Bidi Welfare Commissioner, Bhilwara. The Memorandum demanded the implementation of various welfare schemes for Bidi workers. The Sammelan was covered in a local newspaper. SEWA has been organizing Bidi workers in Ajmer for the last 2 years and has presently organized around 2500 Bidi workers in Ajmer.
Submitted by : Self Employed Women’s Association ( SEWA)
Place : Ajmer, Rajasthan
Date : Thursday, 30/3/2011
Sammelan of Women Bidi Workers in Ajmer
Sub: Implementation Welfare Schemes for Bidi Workers
Self Employed Women’s Association is a central trade union organizing women workers
since 1972 with a goal to provide full employment and make them self reliant. Today SEWA has organized 1325752 women workers in nine states of India out of which 71335 are the beedi workers.
Beedi Trade is predominantly by women who work in their homes. Home is their work place. Hence these workers are invisible. These workers are daily earners who earn Rs.60/- to 70/- by rolling 1000 Beedis. These workers are the sole earners of their families.
Beedi workers are only home based workers who are covered under Beedi Welfare Cess Act. Through this Act, Beedi Workers have got an identity as a worker and many welfare benefits like maternity benefits, scholsrship for children, spectacles, death compensation and so on. These schemes are very important as it gives much needed visibility and validity to these workers and helps in eliminating the child labour. We really appreciate the efforts made by Beedi Welfare Department in implementing the welfare benefits. Still there is a need to cover more Beedi workers within its preview.
We therefore demand that:
A special drive is carried out to :
To provide identity cards to the beedi workers by holding camps.
More beedi workers’ children should avail scholarship benefits.
Eye camps should be organized in the areas populated by the beedi workers.
Women Bidi Workers Attending the Sammelan
At The Sammelan: Officials from Bidi Worker's Welfare Department; Mala; Leaders and Organizers from Sewa
Self Employed Women's Association
SEWA Reception Centre, Opp. Victoria Garden, Bhadra, Ahmedabad - 380 001. India.
Phone : 91-79-25506444 / 25506477 / 25506441, Fax : 91 - 79 - 25506446, Email :email@example.com