People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 19

May 08, 2011




CITU Asks for Immediate Actions


THROUGH a letter written to the union home minister Mallikarjun Kharage on May 5, CITU general secretary Tapan Sen has drawn attention to the ghastly tragedy in which 11 workers were charred to death in a massive fire at M/s Pinki Porsch Pvt Ltd, a shoe factory in Udyog Nagar, Peeragarhi Area of West Delhi on April 27. As per reports, 80 people were working in this three-storey building whose exit points were locked from outside when the fire broke out, and many more casualties are feared. Out of the 80 people working in this factory, the names of only 22 workers were registered on the rolls. As the rest were employed through contractors, there were no entry records for these contract workers. As a result, relatives of these poor workers are still running from pillar to post to find out their whereabouts.


The letter has further pointed out that this was not an isolated incident as there have been instances of such fatal accidents in the factories located in this industrial area. Here thousands of workers are being employed through unregistered contractors, without any semblance of records regarding their entry or identity.


Expressing the strongly feeling that the Ministry of Labour of the government of India cannot remain a silent spectator to such ghastly cases of homicides perpetrated by a group of unscrupulous and greedy factory owners, the letter has asked the minister to take the following steps without any delay.


1) Order an immediate investigation by the Directorate General Factory Advice Service and Labour Institutes (DGFASLI), Mumbai into this multi-fatal accident.


2) Assessment of occupational safety and health in the factories located in Udyog Nagar in Peeragarhi Industrial Area in West Delhi by DGFASLI.


3) Making it mandatory for factory owners to issue identity cards to all workers employed through contractors for entry records which should be checked by the labour inspection authorities at regular intervals.


Urging the minister to treat the matter as urgent, the letter asked him to take remedial steps at the earliest so that such horrifying tragedies in the capital of this country do not recur again.