33 tribal workers, 9 children rescued from UP brick kiln: J'khand govt

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Ranchi, Jun 23 (PTI) Thirty-three tribal migrant workers and their nine children forced to live like bonded labours in a brick kiln in Uttar Pradesh were rescued and are on way to their native Jharkhand by a train Wednesday.

All of them boarded Shramik Maurya Express this morning, a state government spokesperson said.

These migrant workers hailing from Tangar village under Chanho block of Ranchi district had gone to Uttar Pradesh in search of livelihood and were forced to work like bonded labourers in a brick kin in Deoria after being lured by a contractors who did not pay wages to them, he said.

All of them along with their nine children were freed at the intervention of Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, the official said.

The operator of the brick kiln at the intervention of the Jharkhand and the Uttar Pradesh officials made Rs 5 lakh payment to the workers out of total Rs 7 lakh due to them.

'At the initiative of chief minister Hemant Soren, 33 tribal workers and their nine children, residents of Chanho block of Ranchi, have been freed from the brick kiln in Deoria, Uttar Pradesh with the joint efforts of state migrant control room of the Labour Department and an NGO.

'On the morning of June 23, all the migrant workers left for Ranchi by Maurya Express train,' the spokesperson said.

He said the workers who had gone to UP in January were held hostage there at Silver brick kiln located at village Mundera in Deoria district and were forced to live in hellish and inhuman conditions like bonded labourers.

The accommodation provided to the workers was in a dilapidated and unhygienic condition resulting in children of the workers falling sick, the official said.

He added that when the CM came to know about the matter, he directed the state migrant control centre of the labour department to take steps to free the workers.

'After this the labor department contacted Deoria District Collector and Superintendent of Police. An inquiry committee was constituted under the supervision of the police administration of Deoria. The committee investigated various aspects related to this matter and got the workers free.

'Also, out of the outstanding remuneration of Rs 7 lakh, about Rs 5 lakh were given to the workers by the brick kiln operator at the intervention of the administration,' the official added.

Earlier, this month the state government ensured return of 38 Jharkhand tribal women stranded in Tamil Nadu due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown in the southern state, to their home district of Dumka.

Last month 26 migrant workers from Jharkhand,engaged in a project in Nepal by Larsen & Tourbro,through a contractor, who had been stranded due to lockdown in the Himalayan country to rein in the coronavirus surge were rescued at the initiative of the Jharkhand government. PTI NAM SNS SNS

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