A State level workshop was organized by Unorganized Workers Federation along with SOCO Trust and Bharathi Trust on the release of Bonded Labour and their rehabilitation. The workshop was conducted on 22nd Nov 2014, at ICSA, Egmore Chennai. The following are the resolutions passed at this workshop
BONDED LABOUR RELEASE & REHABILITATION
22.11.14 ICSA Centre Chennai 8
Special Address by Justice Murugesan Member NHRC
- Survey and Identification of Bonded Labourers in Tamil Nadu in Stone Quarries, Brick kilns, Rice Mills, Sumangali Scheme, Construction, Agriculture, Forced Labour of Thurumbars and many other occupations by involving Trade Unions and other Organisations working with Bonded Labour, and time bound Release – Rehabilitation measures must be undertaken. Vigilance Committees at the State, District and Divisional levels should be formed in Tamil Nadu with Representatives from Trade Unions and Organisations working with Bonded Labour.
- The Released Bonded Labourers must be provided with House with Patta, Cattle, 2-5 acres of Agricultural Land, Voter Card and Ration Card and Quarry Lease Rights for Quarry Bonded Labour in a time bound manner.
- A) The 650 Released Bonded Labourers from Stone Quarries of Jagadirikutta, Renga Reddy District of Andhra Pradesh, brought back to Tamil Nadu with the help of Tamil Nadu Police by Supreme Court Commissioner Sri PV Rajagopal, and residing in Villuppuram, Salem, Perambalur and Trichy Districts must be given Release Certificates and Rehabilitation measures.
B) Over 650 Irulas released from Rice Mills of Red Hills in 2004 must be given Release Certificates and Rehabilitation measures.
C) The 19 Released Bonded Labourers from Mangalore, Karnataka, in 2004 rescued and brought to Jambumadai, MusiriTaluk, Trichy District by Tamil Nadu Police must be given Release Certificates and Rehabilitation measures.
D) 15 Irulas released in 2006 from Brick kiln owned by K Duraikannu of Pazhavanthangal, Vellore Taluk and District and 14 Irulas released in 2008 from Brick kiln of Thirukandalam of Tiruvallur District must be provided with Rehabilitation measures.
E) 19 Irulas released from Mumbai Bangle factory rescued by Cuddalore Police in 2012 and brought back to villages in Chidambaram Taluk, Cuddalore District, must be given Release Certificates and Rehabilitation measures.
F) The Released Bonded Labourers from Northern States in the 80’s and 90’s without any Rehabilitation must be provided with Rehabilitation measures.
- The Reports of Public Hearing by National Commission for Women in 2004 on Irula Bonded Labour in Rice Mills of Red Hills, as well as Public Hearing on Quarry Bonded Labour in 2013 must be implemented .
- The Forced Labour of Puthirai Vannars (Thurumbars) must be declared as Bonded Labour in Tamil Nadu as in the case of Odisha. Identification, Release and Rehabilitation to be undertaken by Tamil Nadu State Government .
- Sumangali Scheme in vogue in Textiles should be declared as Bonded Labour and banned. These Women above 18 years must be made permanent in these mills and production centres.
- The Action Plan on Migrant Children by Tamil Nadu Government in 2010 must be implemented to overcome Bonded Labour-Child Labour conditions among Migrant Labour.
- Government should plan and implement Cooperative Rice Mills and Brick kilns for the Rehabilitation of Bonded Irula Labourers.
- Minor Minerals Rules should be amended by TN Govt to conform to Supreme Court order on Quarries (2012) and stone quarries allotted on lease to Released Bonded Labour Societies.
- Action Plan on Bonded Labour as evolved by Karnataka State must be evolved and implemented by State and Central Government.
- Age of Child should be fixed as below 18 in the Child Labour Act and All child labourers must be treated as Bonded Labourers and provided with Release certificates and Rehabilitation in the form of Residential compulsory education and livelihoods for the parents.
- Agricultural Lands, belonging to Govt, surplus under Land ceiling Act should be distributed to Landless agricultural labourers and Panchami Lands restored to Dalits, in order to prevent Bondage in India.
- Forest Rights Act 2005 must be implemented in Tamil Nadu and Forest Rights ensured for Tribals.
- Tamil Nadu Manual Workers’ Act 1982 must be implemented with Regulation of employment and wages to prevent Bonded Labour.
- Following are the needs for incorporation in the Bonded Labour Rules & State Action Plan:
- i.Periodical surveys by Vigilance committees to be formed at State. District and Sub divisional levels
- ii.Time Bound Release of bonded labour on complaints and soon after survey, provision of Rs 5000 with Release certificate
- Shelter and counseling with Protection
- Rs 95, 000 as Relief
- Time Bound Rehabilitation to be planned in consultation with Released Bonded Labourers
- Provision of Ration card ( Antyodaya) and voter id
- House site and Housing with patta
- Free Education for children
- Milch cattle scheme and Agricultural land/ quarry on lease to group/ MFP licence
- Skill Training
- State Vigilance committee to have representatives of organizations, unions involved with bonded labour and released bonded labourers to be 50%
- Inter state migrant bonded labourers rescued by police from source state to be given Release certificate by RDO in either state
SOCO Trust – Bharathi Trust – Unorganised Workers Federation