The two States, Union government and ILO will be part of the instutional mechanism
Satya Sunder Barik
Orissa and Andhra Pradesh area all set to sign an inter-state agreement to take care of migrant labour working in unorganized sectors such as in brick kilns and construction sites. The two State governments, Union government and International Labour Organisation will be part of the institutional mechanism as envisaged under the draft agreement.
The agreement first of its kind in the country, was mooted when reports of Oriya migrant labour being subjected to torture in hand of labour contractors and brick kiln manufacturers in Andhrapradesh came pouring in.
Despite of several interventions by State Labour Commision and non government organization, no real improvement in condition of migrant labour in work sites could be achieved.
Main objective behind entering into an agreement is to ensure payment of legimate wage and provide good working condition to migrant labour. A.C Padhiary, Orissa Labour Commissioner, told the Hindu, here on Monday.
“under the draft agreement, responsibilities of both the State government have been clearly defined. Andhra Pradesh government will ensure payment of minimum wage, supervision of working condition, extension of health service, provision of health service, provision of ration cards and facilitating education for children of migrant labour” Mr. Padhiary said.
State level Cell
He said Orissa government on its part would send migrant labour by duly registering them through district level migration cell. “there will be State level cell and interstate committee to resolve various issues associated with migrant labour”.
ILO will facilitate time-to-time orientation for leaders of migrant labour and official to be depted to monitor migration issues.
Mapping of population of migrant labour moving to Andhra Pradesh for working in unorganized sectors would be carried out.
Lakhs of migrant labour especially from poverty sticken KBK region of Orissa go to Rangareddy, Nalgonda and Vishakapatnam district of Andhra Pradesh every year to work in brick kiln.
As per an estimate 3,46,471 and 2,78,641 labours from Kalahandi and Bolangir had gone to Andhrapradesh as brick kiln workers in 2008-09.
Other two district of Nuapada and Sonepur of Orissa also send sizeable migrant labourer population to Andhrapradesh.
However, officialy total number of labourers migrating from Orissa to Andhra Pradesh hardly crosses one lakh.
If an interstate agreement reached to extend welfare programmes, there would be no better news for the marginalized section of the society
Migrant labour are often subjected to torture while their children are deprived from education.
These labourers work and live in unhygienic condition” said Umi Daniel an activist who works in migration issues.
State labour Commissioner said if the agreement results in improvement in condition of migrant labour, similar pacts would be signed with other State governments.
About 20 lakh labourers migrate from the state every year. Highest 9 lakh labourers from Ganjam district alon go to Gujrat.
THE HINDU 18th October.