Delhi gets a breather as domestic breeding checkers call off strike

New Delhi: Delhi heaved a sigh of relief as domestic breeding checkers engaged under the MCDs called off their strike and returned to work on Friday after the corporation’s assurance to regularise their posts.

Madan Pal, a leader among the domestic breeding checkers told Firstpost that, PK Gupta, the nodal officer to all the three Municipal Corporations of Delhi have assured them to improve their service condition apart from regularising their jobs.

 Delhi gets a breather as domestic breeding checkers call off strike

Domestic breeding checkers are back to work in Delhi. AFP

"After having a threadbare discussion with the leaders of the agitation the MCDs agreed upon to provide us with all the benefits as per norms," he said.

A press release issued by the domestic breeding checkers said, "The MCDs also asked for our suggestions regarding regularisation of our posts and also assured to begin the process within two to three weeks."

"The assurance also includes benefits such as yearly bonus and leave, provident fund and medical treatment," said the release.

The domestic breeding checkers had been on indefinite strike since 16 January and on demonstration in front of the civic centre in Delhi.

Domestic breeding checkers are the health workers engaged by the MCDs to prevent vector-borne diseases.

Ashwini Yadav, another leader said, "Our main job is to check if dengue, chikungunya and malaria carrying mosquito have breeded in the households of the city. If found we destroy their breeding grounds immediately."

domestic breeding checkers of MCDs go from house to house to check mosquito larvae in stagnant water.

“Every checker has to visit 1,000 to 1,500 homes every month and spray insecticide wherever and whenever needed," says Yadav.

As per a news report published by The Hindu last year, there are 1,350 domestic breeding checkers under the South Delhi Municipal Corporation.

Yadav said that the number of checkers engaged in all three municipal corporations will not be less than 3,200 who have been appointed during the last 20 years.

"Since we are not regular employees we get a meagre Rs 12,000 as monthly salary, which is not at all sufficient to meet the expenses of our families," he said.

Pal said that even that salary is not regular.

"Many of us have not received the salary for the last two or three months," he said.

Domestic breeding checkers have to keep the record of every household they visit and take the signature of the house owner on the record sheet acknowledging the visit.

"We visit the households and check the stagnant waters in a house and ask the house owner to throw away the water if it is found to have mosquito larvae," said Yadav. “After the vessel containing stagnant water is emptied, the chemicals to prevent further breeding is sprayed in it."

A domestic breeding checker can also slap a fine up to Rs 500 on the households for errant water management.

Only last year the capital city saw a major outbreak of vector-borne disease such as dengue and chikungunya which claimed more than 10 lives.

Strikes by these health workers were seen as a challenge to the MCDs which are fighting tooth and nail to contain the menace.

Updated Date: Jan 20, 2017 14:59:54 IST