Less than 34,000 inter-State migrant workers in 2019-20, says government -Priscilla Jebaraj

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published Published on Sep 15, 2020   modified Modified on Sep 16, 2020

-The Hindu

No workers were registered in Delhi, Patna; No data on Shramik Special deaths, says responses to RTI requests.

In the last five years, there have been no inter-State migrant workers registered in the Delhi, Dehradun or Patna regions. Nationwide, there were less than 34,000 workers registered in 2019-20 under the Inter-State Migrant Workmen (ISMW) Act, 1979, according to a response to a recent Right to Information Act request.

In response to another recent RTI request, the Indian Railways said it only keeps data on “casualties arising from consequential train accidents”, and thus has no information regarding deaths on the Shramik Special trains which transported migrants during the lockdown.

On Monday, the Labour Ministry told Lok Sabha that it had no data on the migrant workers who lost their jobs or lives during the lockdown. However, it claimed that over one crore migrant workers returned to their home States during the lockdown.

The ISMW Act, which came into force four decades ago, is meant to protect vulnerable workers who leave their own home State for employment, most of them hired through contractors. It applies to every establishment and contractor who has five or more migrants on their rolls and prohibits their employment without a certificate of registration. According to the Act, each registered worker must be issued a pass book with details of employment, wages and benefits.

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The Hindu, 15 September, 2020, https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/less-than-34000-inter-state-migrant-workers-in-2019-20-says-government/article32611360.ece?fbclid=IwAR3sf_Wa1K3jy3ZLMLHsqoNLUy6GYQiRKjyQm-SCiRPa6YJro4LGg5g0LEk


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