Bonded labour: TN rights panel starts probe

The Tamil Nadu Human Rights Commission (TNSHRC) will issue summons to the RDO of Hosur and Thalli police stations following a complaint by a person from Irular tribe. The person Sakthivel, 28, in his complaint to the State Human Rights Commission said that his family and friends were detained in a brick kiln factory at Hosur in Krishnagiri district of Tamil Nadu allegedly as bonded labourers.

The Irular tribal person also complained that his two-and-a-half-year-old son was electrocuted to death at the brick kiln in the first week of May 2022 but no action was taken by the Hosur RDO and the Thalli police station and requested the State Human Rights Commission to intervene in the matter.

The Tamil Nadu SHRC started a probe on Wednesday and met ten people who were all mentioned in the complaint of Shakthivel.

Officials of the State Human Rights Commission told IANS that a notice is being issued to release those who are allegedly under bonded labour at the brick kiln. The SHRC team met ten people including five children and elicited their responses and after taking information from them, the SHRC took steps for the release of those who are under alleged confinement in the brick kiln as bonded labour.

After allegations of Sakthivel that the RDO did not take any steps to release them from bonded labour and hence the SHRC will issue notices to RDO and Thalli police station.

The SHRC also took statements from P. Ranjith Kumar and C.R. Veeravendan, district coordinators of bonded labour system abolition project from Rights Education and Development (READ) as also S. Janaki, textile worker project co-ordinator of READ.

There has been an increase in complaints against bonded labour in brick kilns in Tamil Nadu using Irular tribals including children.

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