Assam: Labour Commissioner takes Wipro to court for violating Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act
29 September 2019: Labour Commissioner’s office in Assam has acted on a complaint of contract data entry operators employed by Wipro in Guwahati, Assam for executing National Register of Citizens (NRC) project. The company did not obtain a contractor’s license mandatory for employing contract workers under the Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1971. It further siphoned wages of contract workers and paid them less than the ₹14,500 per month mandated by the government.
Supreme Court reprimands government for Safai Karamchari deaths
18 September 2019: Hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) concerning death of safai karamcharis while cleaning manholes and sewers, the bench of Justice Arun Mishra, MR Shah and BR Gavai reprimanded the central government for its inaction in putting safety measures in place. The Supreme Court had called for criminalisation of entry into sewers without safety equipment in March 2014 and ordered the government to pay ₹10 lakh as compensation to the families of the deceased. After 5 years, Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry, in July 2019, issued a circular to all states and union territories to set up Emergency Response Sanitation Units in major cities. The bench rapped Attorney General KK Venugopal for this delay saying ‘nowhere in the world do people get sent to gas chambers to die’.
Punjab: High Court convicts police officers for killing protesting workers
16 September 2019: On 25 October 1991, police opened fire on workers peacefully protesting at the gate of Bhawani Cotton Mill, Abohar killing eight and severely injuring eighteen other workers. After twenty-seven years, a bench of Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Harinder Singh Sidhu of the Punjab and Haryana High Court has ruled that the police were negligent in discharge of their duties and in firing on an unarmed peaceful gathering of workers which violated the fundamental rights of the workers. The Bench also modified conviction of three accused police officers from murder to culpable homicide and suo motu ordered compensation to the families of the victims with 9% interest from the date of the incident between ₹2Lakh to ₹3Lakh. Court has ordered that the compensation be paid within three months.