AITUC condemns chemical spray on migrant workers in Bareilly, seeks Labour Min intervention

New Delhi, Apr 1 () The All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC) on Wednesday condemned the use of disinfectant spray on migrant workers in Bareilly who were returning home amid the coronavirus lockdown.

It added that migrant workers should not be dehumanised or criminalised.

"AITUC strongly condemns the use of disinfectant spray on the migrant workers in Bareilly who were desperate to reach home and walking for miles on the highways," AITUC General Secretary Amarjeet Kaur said in a statement.

"It is criminal to use chemical spray on human bodies as it can cause nausea, vomiting, head ache, irritation and damage to eyes...and could be fatal in case of children and those with ailment of asthma, diabetes etc," she added.Advertisement

AITUC also noted that in Bulandshahar, a police personnel was seen writing "I am a lockdown breaker" on the forehead of a worker.

"Could anybody witness such a scene with an affluent, some of them in high positions violating advisories on lockdown even though having a history of travelling in Corona effected countries in the months of February- March 2020," Kaur added.

Further, some workers in Surat were not only lathicharged, but cases have also been filed against them, it said.

There are no efforts by the authorities to reach out to the places where these workers are held up in various states after losing their livelihood and having no resources to feed themselves, the union added.

No efforts are being made to explain to them the need of the lockdown while also ensuring their basic essentials of food water and medical care, it said. "It is shameful that some of those in power including some responsible government officials having scant regard to the basic human rights of crores of vulnerable, helpless poor workers who are desperate having lost their livelihood, place of stay and compelled due to circumstances to walk for miles to reach back homes in villages," she added.Advertisement

The AITUC demanded the intervention of the Ministry of Labour to protect the workers.

"We also demand from the central government to come out with special financial help to the state governments in fulfilling their obligations towards these migrant workers as well as the others poor working masses in the states who have suddenly lost their livelihood due to lockdown," it added.

Earlier last month, the AITUC had demanded a Rs 5 lakh crore package in the wake of informal sector workers losing their jobs due to the lockdown. KKS KKS ABMABM

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