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Labour Ministry opens control rooms as migrant workers head back home

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 20, 2021

CITU asks Centre to ensure full wages for workers

As the country witnesses another exodus of migrant workers back to their villages, the Union Labour Ministry has decided to reopen the 20 control rooms which were set up in April 2020.

Union Labour Secretary Apurva Chandra said migrant workers who need any assistance can make use of the control rooms. A release from the Ministry said the officials with the Chief Labour Commissioner will be available in the 20 control rooms and they will address wage-related grievances of workers employed in the Central sphere. The control room will also try and mitigate the problems of migrant workers through co-ordination with various State governments. The Ministry claimed that lakhs of workers used this facility in 2020 and resolved their grievances .

The Ministry said aggrieved workers can access these control rooms through email, mobile and Whatsapp. "These control rooms are being managed by Labour Enforcement Officers, Assistant Labour Commissioners, Regional Labour Commissioners, and Deputy Chief Labour Commissioners of the respective regions. The functioning of all 20 call centres is being monitored and supervised by the Chief Labour Commissioner (C) at headquarters on a daily basis and the same is also reviewed with regions concerned during State visit by CLC(C) and other senior officers personally," the release added.

The Ministry has also advised its officers to adopt a humane approach to assist the workmen and ensure delivery of timely relief to the needy ones. Chief Labour Commissioner (C) DPS Negi said this team of officers will try to mitigate problems of workers as much as possible.

Left leaning trade union CITU said in a statement that local and regional lockdowns and curfews are creating uncertainties about the work and income for the working people, the migrant workers and unorganised sector workers in particular.

"Reminiscent of the migrant workers’ march around one year back, migrant workers are reportedly again heading to their native places. Instead of assuring them of protecting their jobs, incomes and residences, the finance minister has assured industry that there would not be full lockdown," said CITU general secretary Tapan Sen. He asked the Centre to ensure wages for workers without any cuts wherever lockdown or curfew are imposed and they are not able to go to work.

Published on April 20, 2021

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