51 bonded labourers rescued

Phagwara, March 12: As many as 51 bonded labourers belonging to nine families of Uttar Pradesh were rescued from brick kilns by an NGO, Volunteers for Social Justice, at Mao Sahib village near Phillaur on Saturday evening.

Yogender Parshad, legal adviser of the NGO, had lodged a complaint with Deputy Commissioner, Jalandhar, Varinder Kumar Sharma on March 1 who instructed Phillaur SDM to act on the complaint swiftly.

These labourers said they had come from UP and were working in the brick kilns for the past five months, but were “not being given daily wages” and other basic amenities. The labourers were allegedly denied their wages and paid only paltry sums for sustenance. Moreover, they were allegedly made to work in dismal conditions with no access to drinking water, proper housing and toilets.

Jalandhar Deputy Commissioner Varinder Kumar Sharma has marked an inquiry into the matter to the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Phillaur, and had asked him to submit his report within a week. The release orders of the labourers are being prepared. Stringent action in accordance with the law would be taken against the guilty brick kiln owner Avtar Singh, said Tehsildar Joginder Lal.

All the rescued labourers were sent to their native village in Uttar Pradesh, said the Naib Tehsildar who along with Labour Inspector, Patwari and Kanungo raided the brick kilns.
 Source Tribune India

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