Rayagada : At least 15 migrant bonded labourers from Odisha’s Rayagada district have been rescued from Peddapalli district of Telangana State on Saturday.
Acting on a tip off that labourers were tortured in a brick kiln, a non-government organization rescued them from a brick kiln in a joint coordination with its Telengana counterparts.
The rescued labourers had been trafficked to Telengana as part of bondage labour system prevalent in some parts of the district, said officials.
The Socio-Economic Caste Census – 2011 had reported existence of 8,400 bonded labourers in the state. The government has meanwhile increased the rehabilitation amount of bonded labourers from Rs 20,000 to Rs one lakh.
Though the National Human Rights Commission has ordered for the complete elimination of the practice, it goes unabated with thousands of from poorer and weaker sections opting for inter-state migration to eke out a living. In the process they get trapped in the vicious cycle of bonded labour. Migrant labourers particularly from Kalahandi-Bolangir-Koraput (KBK) districts are becoming easy victims of bonded labour and all this has been happening because of extreme poverty and high debt conditions. Alienation due to caste issues was also driving these Odisha families to get trapped in the brick kilns outside their State.
The abhorrent system that was abolished in the country through the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976 is still in vogue in many parts of the state as the fruits of government-sponsored poverty alleviation and social security schemes do not reach the targeted section.