Skip to main content

Labour dispute at Madhya Pradesh's former Century units turns murky: Worker commits suicide, children drop out

By Our Representative
There appears to be no end in sight in the dispute between about 1,700 employees, who include 1,200 workers, of an Indore-based textile mills, sold by Century to Kolkata’s Wearit last year, with the workers insisting that the Madhya Pradesh labour commissioner’s order for payment of eight days’ “unpaid” wages was far from sufficient.
Amidst reports of sharp adverse social impact on the workers as a result of the closure of the mills, a civil rights organization, fighting for the workers’ rights, has alleged that the Wearit CEO has denied all the demands of the workers, despite the order of the Industrial Tribunal last year wanting workers to be paid for all the 158 days, as also reinstatement of 300 of them.
Giving the example of a worker Jitendra Dhangar, 27, who recently committed suicide, it said, this happened because he was increasingly finding it unbearable to manage his family in view of a marriage of his brother. On the day of funeral, the police stopped women from reaching Dhangar’s house and garlanding the body, going so far as to lathi charge, hurting about five women.
A symptom of the how the refusal to pay wages has impacted workers is, many workers’ children being forced shifted to government schools from private schools in order to save expenses.
In its statement, the top civil rights network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), which is backing workers’ struggle for their rights for the last about a year, said that the workers, through trade unions, had filed a contempt case before the industrial tribunal, which had asked the managements of the two companies to pay up the wages.
As a result of the labour commissioner was “compelled to summon the company directors and issue orders for payment of eight days wages when the workers produced and earned profit for Century”, but “the decision on the rest about 158 days payment was not taken”, adding, the labour commissioner has full powers, to pressurize the current and past owners.
NAPM said, the Madhya Pradesh government “stands exposed” in the case of 1,200 workers and 400 staff members of Century Yarn/Denim , sold to Wearit, because of the stance taken by the labour commissioner.
The state BJP rulers, NAPM alleged, on one hand claims ‘Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas’. Despite refusal of the payment of wages, the “authorities of the Madhya Pradesh government in Indore have remained biased” and refused to ensure “justice to the workers.”
The matter is currently pending with the Madhya Pradesh High Court’s Indore bench. The hearings were concluded on February 7. However no orders have yet been filed. In an earlier ruling, the High Court said, it had “not stayed the order of the industrial tribunal.”
NAPM has demanded that the textile unit should be reopened, run and workers should be permitted to work, and the sale deed with Wearit, which has been retrenching, harassing, exploiting – through late or no full payment – its workers in other factories nearby, should be declared as null and void.
The statement, signed, among others by well-known social activists Medha Patkar, Aruna Roy, Nikhil Dey, Shankar Singht, Prafulla Samanta, Binayak Sen, Kavita Srivastava, Sandeep Pandey and others, also demanded payment of relief-cum-compensation to the tune of Rs 5 lakh to the family members of Dhangar, who was forced to commit suicide.

Comments

TRENDING

Iswarchandra Vidyasagar was a 'frustrated' reformer who turned into a conservative

By Bhaskar Sur "If someone says the Manusamhita was written by all wise Manu and the principal scripture of the land and if he asks me to throw it away, I'll say it is nothing short of atrocious audacity." -- Iswarchandra Vidyasagar

Why do I lend my support to voices protesting world class renovation of Gandhi Ashram?

By Martin Macwan* One would not expect an activist working on Dalit rights to join such a protest. Dalits carry unhealed trauma that Gandhi caused to Dr BR Ambedkar and the Dalit cause of effective political representation by using violent means of his own definition in the event of the Poona Pact. This apart, Gandhi’s ideas in general, which changed often, on caste were orthodox. I have nothing to add to the subject after the sharpest critique offered by Dr Ambedkar.

2002 riots: Gujarat assembly 'misinformed' about dereliction of duty, says ex-DGP

By Rajiv Shah  Former Gujarat topcop RB Sreekumar, an IPS officer of the 1971 batch, has alleged that the Gujarat government gave “totally false information” on the floor of the State Assembly regarding the appeal he made to the Gujarat governor for the “initiation of departmental action against those responsible for culpable negligence in maintenance of public order and investigation of genocidal crimes” during the 2002 riots.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Odisha bauxite mining project to 'devastate' life of 2,500 Adivasi, Dalit farmers: NAPM

Counterview Desk  While the public hearing on mining in Mali hills has been cancelled due to protests by Adivasi and Dalit farmers of the Mali Parbat Surakhya Samiti, Odisha, who have been protesting against the proposed bauxite mining project, India’s top civil rights network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) has said it is “deeply concerned” at the decision of the Government of Odisha to push the project in a Schedule-V Adivasi-belt Koraput district against the interests of the people and environment.

'Devastating impact': Rural workers suffer as Govt of India NREGA budget down by 34%

Counterview Desk  A civil rights group, the NREGA Sangharsh Morcha has sent a letter to the Prime Minister and the Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj stating that 34 per cent decrease in the fiscal budget of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA) for year 2021-22 has added to woes on India’s rural population, already suffering from “devastating impact” of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Economy in tatters, labour codes 'take away' workers' safety, benefits, right to form TU

By Our Representative  The four new labour codes promulgated by the Government of India came in for sharp criticism from several labour unions and civil rights groups at one-day discussion meeting organised in Ranchi (Jharkhand) on the issue of ‘changes in labour laws. Participants in the meeting asserted that under these new codes, many of the benefits and safeties accorded to labourers have been "taken away", while the right of labourers to create trade unions has been attacked.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Celebrating birthday amidst image of 'coerced, submissive' India ruled by a strong leader

Pushkar Raj*  As the weeks long birthday festivity of the leadership was being rejoiced India wide, the Covid was still raging in several parts of India. The carnival was in line with the post-Covid decisions and actions of the leadership demonstrating a pursuit of personal power and glory instead of national interest in times of disease and death.

Politically-motivated: Global NGO network on ED 'harassment' of Harsh Mander

Counterview Desk  CIVICUS , a top global alliance of civil society organisations seeking to strengthen citizen action and civil society around the world with a claimed membership of more than 10,000, objecting to the alleged harassment of IAS bureaucrat-turned-human rights activist Harsh Mander by the Government in India, has said that the the the Enforcement Directorate (ED) raid on his house and office highlights “an ongoing pattern of baseless and politically-motivated criminal charges brought by the authorities against activists across India”.