Covid-19 lockdown affects over 50 lakh tribals dependent on forests, making Van Dhan Yojna more relevant

The current crisis situation due to Covid-19 has posed an unprecedented threat across the country. Almost all the States and UTs in India are affected by it, in varying degrees. The situation has also dealt a blow to the livelihoods of the poor and marginalized communities. The tribal gatherers can be one of the worst affected in these trying times since this is the peak season for harvesting Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP) in many regions.

“About 5 lakhs of tribal artisans make their living through handicraft & handlooms, engaged in Textile weaving, Metal Crafts, Home Décor, Jewellery, Block Printing, ornamental Painting etc. The biggest challenge for tribal artisans, however, is to market their products effectively and make more people aware of the top quality items they develop,” said Pravir Krishna, Managing Director of TRIFED, Ministry of Tribal Affairs.

“TRIFED (under Ministry of Tribal Affairs) has been playing an instrumental role in this regard by procuring tribal-made products and selling them to the masses in India and worldwide under the banner of TRIBES India. They have launched a #GoTribal campaign and are growing from strength to strength via opening up of over 120 permanent outlets across the country (including airports), ecommerce platforms, exhibitions, organizing grand ‘Aadi Mahotsavs; and entering into tie-ups for providing training to the artisans for further capacity building, quality improvement and market alignment,” he added.

over 50 lakhs tribals depend on forest produces, having inherent skills in forest produce harvesting. Tribal Forest produce gatherers usually collect about half to one tonne of Forest produce in a year.

Pravir Krishna

He was addressing a Webinar under ‘Know Your Scheme-Lecture Series’ on “Van Dhan Yojana : Learning For Post Covid-19” organized by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of Rajasthan in association with Trifed, Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India on May 26.  Pravir Krishna, Managing Director of TRIFED, Ministry of Tribal Affairs was the Key Note Speaker detailing the learnings for post Covid-19 and the Webinar was moderated by Mugdha Sinha, Secretary, Science and Technology, Government of Rajasthan.

Further, Pravir Krishna disclosed that over 50 lakhs tribals depend on forest produces, having inherent skills in forest produce harvesting. Tribal Forest produce gatherers usually collect about half to one tonne of Forest produce in a year. Speaking about the immense potential tribals have owing to their inherent skills, Krishna said, “We just need to help them with their skills in Value addition and enabling them as Micro enterprises. Through Minimum Support Price, it is feasible to assure a revenue of Rs.20,000 to Rs.30,000 per person per year and through VanDhan Value addition Scheme,  two to three times of the same.”

“Until now, middlemen have been the key beneficiaries, and how the VanDhan Yojana aims at changing this scenario to increase the share of forest produce gatherers. Proven examples of the scheme were highlighted from Senapati District in Manipur and Longleng District, Nagaland, where tribal gatherers have been able to benefit tremendously under the Van Dhan Yojana,” Krishna described.

TRIFED is also going forward with ‘Tech for Tribals’ initiative by partnering with leading IITs and IIMs of the country along with the Ministry of MSME to form an Entrepreneurship Skill Development Program. Additionally, there is due focus on Digitization of dashboards, monitoring of VanDhan projects to streamline the flow of information, track progress and enable quick submission of proposals under the scheme.

“TRIFED has collaborated with the Art of Living Foundation’s #iStandWithHumanity Initiative through a Stand With Tribal Families component in providing much needed Ration Kits for survival of the tribal community. Ration Kits have already been distributed across various regions of Kashmir, Telangana, Maharashtra, Karnataka and distribution is being planned for other parts of the country as well,” said Krishna.

“TRIFED also initiated Van Dhan Samajik Doori Jagrookta Abhiyaan in association with UNICEF, under which tribals are being provided with crucial information regarding COVID-19 with several guidelines, nationwide and state-specific webinars and instructions on safety measures to be followed. The Ministry of Tribal Affairs has also revised the Minimum Support Prices of NTFP items to provide much needed relief to forest gatherers in these trying times,” he added.

Best practices adopted by states during pandemic

Describing Best Practices being followed under VanDhan, Krishna spoke about door to door procurement of NTFP items in Chhattisgarh, sale of Van Dhan products through mobile vans in Manipur, establishment of MFP Processing units (TRIFOOD) at Raigad, ‘Apni Dukan’ initiative in Madhya Pradesh, among others.

Van Dhan Tribal Enterprise stories from Sirohi, Rajasthan were also highlighted where Amla pickles, Jams, Murraba & other value added products are being processed and marketed effectively under the scheme. Speaking about the Way Forward for Rajasthan, Krishna discussed the potential of additional 145 VanDhan Vikas Kendras that can be sanctioned in Rajasthan and may be established as ‘Tribal Startups for Atmanirbhar Bharat’. The appointment of Aajeevika / Forest Department as second Implementing Agency under Van Dhan Yojana would further expand the coverage of Van Dhan to all Districts of Rajasthan, also increasing the coverage of super foods like Bajra, Jawar, millets, etc.

The Department of Science & Technology, Govt. of Rajasthan, expressed their keen interest in the VanDhan Yojana and discussed a partnership with TRIFED under VanDhan’s ‘Tech for Tribals’ initiative as a Knowledge Partner, along with their established institutional network comprised of IIM Udaipur, IIT Jodhpur, among others to take the scheme forward. — PIB

घर वापसी के लिए खाली जेब, भूखे पेट सैकड़ों किलोमीटर चले मध्यप्रदेश के प्रवासी मजदूर, अब अंधकार में भविष्य

सतना के डाडिन गांव के मनीष मवासी गुरुग्राम के पास सोनम शहर में क्रेशर में काम करने गए। वहां उन्हें 9000 रुपए मासिक वेतन मिलता था। रहने की व्यवस्था ठेकेदार द्वारा की गई थी। लॉक डाउन हुआ, काम बंद हो गया। ठेकेदार ने 5 दिन तक खाने में मदद की फिर कहा कि अब घर चले जाओ, लेकिन एक महीने तक वहां से निकलना मुमकिन नहीं हो पाया। मनीष ने तीन मई को तय किया कि अब घर जाएंगे। उस समय जेब में सिर्फ 1200 रुपए बचे थे। रास्ते में एक ट्रक वालों को 830 दिए और 150 किलोमीटर पैदल चले।

कुछ इसी तरह की कहानी महिलोखर गांव के राजबहोर कोल की है जो राजकोट, गुजरात में टाइल्स बनाने वाली फैक्ट्री में 10 हज़ार रुपए महीने पर काम करते थे। साल के 11 महीने वे वहीं रहते थे। उनकी पत्नी सुनीता गांव में ही 10-12 दिन मजदूरी करती और 2000 रुपये कमा लेती थीं। लॉक डाउन से दोनों का काम बंद हो गया।  फैक्ट्री बंद होने के दिन से राजबहोर को कोई मदद नहीं मिली। मई में राजकोट से मध्यप्रदेश की सीमा तक आने में 1500 रुपए लगे। जेब में अब हजार रुपए बचे थे। पैसे बचाने के लिए राजबहोर ने 6 दिन के सफ़र में आधे दिन खाना नहीं खाया।

सतना के पटना गांव के राजकुमार को भी हैदराबाद से अपने घर तक की यात्रा में 500 किलोमीटर की यात्रा पैदल करनी पड़ी। वे हैदराबाद में संगमरमर पालिश की फैक्ट्री में काम करते थे।  लॉक डाउन के कारण फैक्ट्री बंद हो गई। एक महीने तक बिना काम के बैठे रहे, फिर वापस आना तय किया। ठेकेदार से मजदूरी के बकाया 60 हज़ार मांगे, तो नहीं मिले। उनके पास बस 1000 रुपए बचे थे। पैसा बचाने के लिए उन्होंने बस-ऑटो के अलावा 500 किलोमीटर की यात्रा पैदल की।

मध्यप्रदेश के प्रवासी मजदूरों की ये कहानियां विकास संवाद समिति के रैपिड सर्वे रिपोर्ट के माध्यम से सामने आई है। यह रिपोर्ट 26 मई को ऑनलाइन प्रेस मीट के जरिए विकास संवाद से जुड़े सामाजिक कार्यकर्ता सचिन कुमार जैन और राकेश मालवीय ने जारी किया। रिपोर्ट को मध्यप्रदेश के 10 जिलों के 310 प्रवासी मजदूरों से बातचीत के आधार पर तैयार किया गया है। इनमें से 141 मजदूर (45.5%) अपने परिवार के साथ पलायन पर गए थे। इन मजदूरों के कुल 653 सदस्यों ने पलायन किया था। परिवार के साथ पलायन करने वाले परिवारों के कुल सदस्यों (653) में से 328 (50.2%) सदस्य भी या तो उनके साथ काम कर रहे थे या अन्य किसी आर्थिक गतिविधि में संलग्न थे। इससे परिवार की आय में वृद्धि हो रही थी।

जेब में बस हजार रुपए बचे थे और घर तक का रास्ता हजार किलोमीटर से भी अधिक दूर था। 400 किलोमीटर की यात्रा पैदल की और फिर बस और ऑटो लिया। मैहर पहुंचते ही सारे पैसे खत्म हो गए। उसके बाद 100 किलोमीटर फिर पैदला चला।

राजकुमार

इस अध्ययन से यह पता चला कि त्वरित अध्ययन से यह पता चला कि 310 अध्ययनित व्यक्तियों और परिवारों में से 50.6% लोग पलायन के दौरान निर्माण या इससे जुडी परियोजनाओं में मजदूरी का काम करते थे। इस काम में संगमरमर के पालिश, गिट्टी तोड़ने, पुताई और टाइल्स बनाने आदि के काम शामिल थे। 21 प्रतिशत प्रवासी मजदूर किन्ही व्यापारिक उपक्रमों में दैनिक/मासिक आधार पर रोज़गार पाते थे। इनमें शोरूम में विक्रेता का काम, माल में सुरक्षा कर्मी, किन्हीं दफ्तरों में सेवाएं देने का काम शामिल है। 16.8 प्रतिशत प्रवासी मजदूर कारखानों और छोटे उद्योगों में मशीन चलाने, कपड़ा उद्योग में सहायक आदि का काम कर रहे थे. 8.4 प्रतिशत मजदूर घरेलु सहायक/कामगार की भूमिका में रोज़गार पा रहे थे. केवल 2.3 प्रतिशत प्रवासी बागवानी या फ़ार्महाउस पर, 1 प्रतिशत वाहन चालक और 3.2 प्रतिशत अन्य भूमिका में रोज़गार पा रहे थे।  पेश है रिपोर्ट के महत्वपूर्ण नतीजे।

क्या प्रवास पर वापस जाना चाहते हैं मजदूर

मध्यप्रदेश के मानव और आर्थिक विकास सूचकांकों में पिछड़े हुए जिलों के प्रवासी मजदूरों के बीच किए गए अध्ययन से पता चला कि 56.5% मजदूर 3 से 6 महीने के लिए पलायन करते हैं। जबकि 21.8% मजदूर 3 महीने तक ही अवधि के लिए रोज़गार के लिए पलायन पर रहते हैं। कम अवधि का पलायन मुख्य रूप से कृषि मजदूरी के रूप में होता है। 16.8 प्रतिशत मजदूर 6 महीने से 11 महीने के लिए और 5.2 प्रतिशत मजदूर पूरे साल भर पलायन पर रहते हैं। साल भर पलायन पर रहने वाले मजदूर नियमित रूप से गाँव भी नहीं आते हैं।   

वापस आए कुछ मजदूरों को गांव में मनरेगा के तहत काम मिल रहा है। फोटो- विकास संवाद

अध्ययन किये गए प्रवासी मजदूरों के समूह द्वारा दी गयी जानकारी के विश्लेषण से पता चलता है कि 54.5% मजदूर अब पलायन पर वापस नहीं जाना चाह्ते हैं। जबकि 24.5% ने कहा कि उन्हें अभी बहुत सोचना पड़ेगा. जो असमंजस में हैं, उनकी प्राथमिकता में अब पलायन पर जाना नहीं है, किन्तु क्या गाँव में रोज़गार मिल पायेगा? यदि यहाँ रोज़गार नहीं मिला, तो फिर पलायन पर जाने के अलावा क्या विकल्प है?

21% प्रवासी मजदूर अभी पलायन पर जाने के लिए तैयार हैं, क्योंकि उन्हें लगता है कि इससे उन्हें निरंतर रोज़गार मिला रहता है. पलायन पर जाने की उनकी तैयारी के पीछे उनकी यह सोच है कि सरकारें गाँव में लोगों को रहने देना ही नहीं चाहती हैं।

उनका मानना है कि कोविद19 तो एक महामारी है किन्तु हमारे नियोक्ताओं, प्रशासन और सरकारों ने जिस तरह का व्यवहार किया है, वह बहुत दुखद और अपमानजनक रहा है। जिस दिन तालाबंदी हुई, उसी दिन मजदूरों की के बुरे दिनों की शुरुआत भी हुई। जिन मजदूरों ने कई दिनों से अपना वेतन या मजदूरी नहीं ली थी, उन्हें नियोक्ताओं ने बार-बार मिन्नतें करने के बाद भी मजदूरी का भुगतान नहीं किया। तालाबंदी के दौरान अपनी जमापूंजी से 3 से 4 हफ्ते गुज़ारे किन्तु जब यह समझ आने लगा कि व्यवस्थाएं नहीं हो पाएंगी और अब रोज़गार का भी संकट होने वाला है, तब वापस गांव/घर की तरफ लौटना शुरू कर दिया।

रास्ते में पानी में बिस्किट भिगो-भिगोकर खाए। सड़क के किनारों और गांवों की सीमा के बाहर रातें गुजारीं क्योंकि कोविड19 के भय के कारण गांवों में भी प्रवेश की मनाही थी।

मजदूरों ने बताया

ग्रामीण अर्थव्यवस्था को मजबूत करने की जरूरत

सर्वे में सामने आया है कि कोविड19 के कारण उपजी स्थितियों के कारण जिन गांवों में 30 से 70 प्रतिशत तक पलायन होता था, उन गांवों में लगभग सभी लोग वपास आ गए हैं या आ जाएंगे। ये लोग विभिन्न कामों में अपनी भूमिका निभा रहे थे। आर्थिक विकास के ताने-बाने में इन्होनें बहुत भयावह समय देखा है। वापस आये हुए प्रवासी कामगार इस संशय में हैं कि क्या वास्तव में वे अपने घर या गाँव में रुके रह पायेंगे. यदि सरकार यह चाहती है कि प्रवासी मजदूर अभी कुछ साल सुकून से रहे, तो उसे गांव के स्तर पर खाद्य सुरक्षा, स्वास्थ्य, शिक्षा, आवास, सुरक्षा और रोज़गार की माकूल व्यवस्थाएं खड़ी करने में मदद करने वाली नीतियां बनाना और लागू करना होंगी। यदि सरकार हमेशा की तरह गांवों और गाँव के संसाधनों के प्रति उदासीन रही, तो हालात अच्छे नहीं होंगे।

अध्ययन के मुताबिक 90.3% प्रवासी मजदूर मानते हैं कि अब सरकार को परिवार में किसी एक व्यक्ति के लिए नहीं, सभी कार्य सक्षम सदस्यों के लिए रोज़गार के विकल्प उपलब्ध करवाने चाहिए. परिवार में एक व्यक्ति के रोज़गार से पूरे परिवार का भरण पोषण संभव नहीं होगा।

93.9% प्रवासी कामगार चाहते हैं कि सस्ते राशन की योजना को बेहतर बनाया जाए। अभी भी 20% मजदूर परिवार की राशन कार्ड से वंचित हैं और शेष परिवारों में से एक तिहाई परिवारों में एक या एक से ज्यादा सदस्य राशन की सूची में शामिल नहीं है. वे चाहते हैं कि सभी को बिना किसी भेदभाव के सस्ता राशन मिले।

लगभग 63% परिवार (195 परिवार) ऐसे हैं, जिनके पास सब्जियां उगाने, खेती करने या पशुपालन करने की व्यवस्था है. 153 परिवार मानते हैं कि यदि उन्हें कृषि सम्बंधित गतिविधियों को व्यवस्थित करने के लिए आर्थिक अनुदान मिले, तो कोविड19 का संकट बहुत हद तक कम हो सकेगा।    

प्रवासी कामगार मानते हैं कि यदि वास्तव में कोविड के दुष्प्रभावों को कम करना है तो गांव में ही उत्पादन बढ़ाना होगा. यह जरूरी नहीं है कि हर गांव में उद्योग स्थापित हो, लेकिन कम से कम ऐसा तो हो कि हमें अपने ही जिले में रोज़गार मिल जाए।

76.8% परिवार जमीन और जमीन से सम्बंधित व्यवस्थाओं में बदलाव चाहते हैं। अभी खेती, पशुपालन और आवास से सम्बंधित मामलों में हर स्थान पर वंचित तबकों, गरीब परिवारों और ख़ास कर मजदूरों के साथ अन्यायकारी स्थितियां बनी हुई हैं। प्रवासी कामगार मानते हैं कि यदि वास्तव में कोविड के दुष्प्रभावों को कम करना है तो गांव में ही उत्पादन बढ़ाना होगा. यह जरूरी नहीं है कि हर गांव में उद्योग स्थापित हो, लेकिन कम से कम ऐसा तो हो कि हमें अपने ही जिले में रोज़गार मिल जाए।

100% प्रवासी कामगार शासकीय योजनाओं (वन क्षेत्रों, अधोसंरचना निर्माण और महात्मा गांधी राष्ट्रीय ग्रामीण रोज़गार गारंटी योजना) के तहत मजदूरी की राशि में वृद्धि की जाना चाहिए।

इसी तरह 100% प्रवासी मजदूर बच्चों और किशोरों के लिए गुणवत्तापूर्ण (यानी अच्छी) शिक्षा की व्यवस्था छाते हैं क्योंकि शिक्षा व्यवस्था का अभाव भी पलायन का एक बड़ा कारण है. 87.7% लोग विकासखंड स्तर पर अच्छी स्वास्थ्य सेवाएँ, 63.2% पेंशन और नकद सहायता चाहते हैं। 65.8 प्रतिशत लोग मानते हैं कि ग्रामीण क्षेत्रों में होने वाले सामाजिक और आर्थिक भेदभाव को रोका जाना चहिए। जब सामाजिक भेदभाव होता है, तब भी गाँव के युवा मानते हैं कि पलायन पर चले जाना बेहतर है।

खराब माली हालत की वजह से हुई वापसी

  • 23% मजदूरों के पास घर पहुँचने के वक्त 100 या इससे कम रुपये थे.
  • 25.2% मजदूर जब घर पहुंचे तब उनके पास 101 रुपये से 500 रुपये की राशि और
  • 18.1% मजदूरों के पास 501 रुपये से 1000 रुपये की राशि शेष बची थी.
  • 22.6% प्रवासी मजदूरों के पास कठिन और बुरे सपने जैसी यात्रा को पूरा करने के बाद 1001 रुपये से 2000 रुपये तक की राशि शेष बची थी.
  • लगभग 11% मजदूर ही ऐसे थे, जिनके पास 2000 रुपये से ज्यादा की राशि शेष रही.

वापसी के बाद गांव में क्या हुआ

  • 71.3% प्रवासी मजदूरों का कहना है कि समुदाय या गाँव/बस्ती के अन्य लोगों का व्यवहार सामान्य ही रहा. जब वे पलायन से वापस आये, तब उन्हें अपने परिवार से अलग रहने को कहा गया. इस दौरान वे स्कूल, पंचायत भवन या फिर किसी झोंपड़ी में रहे. यह एक अनिवार्यता थी ताकि महामारी के फैलाव को रोका जा सके.
  • 23.5% प्रवासी मजदूरों का कहना है कि वापस आने पर उनके साथ भेदभाव पूर्ण व्यवहार किया गया.
  • 5.2% लोगों के साथ अपमानजनक व्यवहार किया गया. 
  • 57.4% प्रवासी मजदूरों पर कोई क़र्ज़ नहीं है. इनमें से कुछ लोग आपने नातेदारी में कुछ राशि उधार ले लेते हैं, किन्तु उसे क़र्ज़ के रूप में परिभाषित नहीं करते हैं.
  • बेहद कमज़ोर आर्थिक स्थिति वाले प्रवासी मजदूर कहते हैं कि चूंकि हमारे पास कोई संसाधन (जमीन, घर के कागज़ आदि) नहीं हैं, इसलिए हमें क़र्ज़ मिलता भी नहीं है.
  • 15% प्रवासी मजदूरों पर रु. 2001 से रु. 5000 का क़र्ज़ है. 3.5% परिवार ऐसे हैं, जिन पर रु. 25 हज़ार से 50 हज़ार का क़र्ज़ है. 

Rapid study: Mass unemployment worries over 90% migrant workers of Madhya Pradesh

A rapid study conducted by a Bhopal based non-profit Vikas Samvad Samiti (VSS), on situation of migrant labourers who returned to Madhya Pradesh reveals shocking results. The study was released in a virtual press meet on May 26 by social activists associated with VSS–Sachin Kumar Jain and Rakesh Kumar Malviya. VSS conducted the study on 310 migrant labourers from 10 districts of Madhya Pradesh.

The rapid study revealed that while more than 90 percent believe they will face severe unemployment, around 82 percent say they will be in debt for the better part of their lives as they have no sources of income.

Most of the migrant labourers (91.2%) who have returned to Madhya Pradesh apprehend that they will be trapped in the crisis of unemployment. As many as 81% of the workers believe that the pandemic has created an emergency situation and there is an acute crisis of medical facilities for treatment of novel coronavirus. Around 82.3% of the migrant laborers are worried that they will be caught in the web of debt.

Madhya Pradesh has been witnessing a large scale reverse migration since nationwide lockdown to fight Covid-19 crisis. According to MP government’s official data the state had made arrangements for the return of only 4.63 lakh migrant workers from across different states until 20th May 2020, including 1.93 lakh migrant laborers from Gujarat, 1 lakh from Rajasthan and 1.07 lakh from Maharashtra. In addition to this information, an assessment informs that as many as 10 lakh laborers have reached homes or are on their way either on foot or with some other modes of transport, on their own.

According to the Census 2011, around 30.29 lakh migrants from Madhya Pradesh had moved over to 17 states. These included 10.18 lakh men and 20.11 lakh women. The Census 2011 also brings out that the out-migration of women is essentially linked to their marriage whereas that of the men is associated with their employment. Thus, assuming that 50% of women had migrated because of marriage factor, as of 2011 and that as many as 20 lakh persons had migrated to other states from Madhya Pradesh for the job-related reasons. Going by the rate of increase of population at 1.9% per annum, lack of opportunities for employment, absence of policies on rural economies and poor health-nutrition indicators, it is estimated that as many as 30 lakh persons may have migrated to other states. “It needs to be asserted that Covid-19 is not just a health-related disaster. It is also a social and economic emergency that has engulfed India in the whirlpool of uncertainty. In the midst of these circumstances, Vikas Samvad has sought to undertake a Rapid Study on the returning migrant laborers,” said the study brief.

Main Findings from the Rapid Study

Classification of Migrant Laborers

  • 45.5% laborers had out-migrated with their families whilst the remaining 54.5% had gone alone.
  • 31.9% workers were of ages 8-25 years, 43.8% of 26-40 years and that 24.2% of 40+ years.
  • 50.6% migrant laborers were employed in the constructions sector, 21% in the business/enterprises and 16.7% in factories/industries.
  • 26.8% of the returning migrant laborers are from within the districts of Madhya Pradesh whilst 16.1% are from Gujarat, 13.2% from Delhi, NOIDA, Gurgaon, and Faridabad region. 11.9% of the migrant laborers have come back from Uttar Pradesh and that 6.5% from Maharashtra.
  • The average daily earning ranged from Rs. 201 to Rs. 300 for 29.4% of the of the migrant laborers, from Rs.301 to Rs.400 for 41.6% laborers and that 17.1% laborers earned from Rs. 401 to Rs.500 per day.
  • 56.5% of the laborers had out-migrated for a period of 3 to 6 months whilst 21.6% had gone out from their home villages for less than 3 months and that 16.8% for 6 months to 11 months.  
  • 93.2% of the migrant laborers had not received any formal letter of appointment or contract of employment. Thus, their employment was devoid of any vested legal rights.
  • As the mode of payment of wages varies from being daily, weekly, or monthly or whilst returning back to home, the sudden lockdown has left 47% laborers either unpaid or only partially paid.
  • Whilst the entire nation is basking in the glory of digital payment system, the study informs that 85.8% migrant laborers received their remittances in cash. Thus, no systematic evidence exists with regard to the employment and wages paid for.
  • 81% migrant laborers informed that they did not get any leave or holidays during their employment. Moreover, the wages are deducted for the absent days resulting in the loss of their earnings. 
  • As many as 57.4% migrant laborers do not have any burden of loans/borrowings.
A woman migrant labour sharing her ordeal the rapid survey team
Image- Vikas Samvad Samiti

Circumstances Arising Amidst Covid-19

  • The kind of treatment, economic insecurity and agony that has been faced, 54.6% of the migrant laborers in the Study area are rather averse to migrating back should the Covid-triggered situation return to normalcy. About one-fourth (24.5%) of the returning migrants are indecisive whether they would choose to out-migrate again and if yes, when. Around one-fifth (21%) migrants, however, are clear in their minds to get back after the normalcy for workers gets restored.
  • 23% of the returning migrant laborers were left with an amount of less than Rs. 100/- whilst 7% of the laborers did not even have a rupee with them! About one-fourth (25.2%) workers had money ranging from Rs.101/- to Rs. 500/- whilst 18.1% had money ranging from Rs. 501/- to Rs.1000/-. Only 11% laborers had cash of more than Rs.2001/-
  • Most (91.2%) of the migrant laborers apprehend that they will be trapped in the crisis of unemployment. As many as 81% of the workers believe that there is an emergency of the pandemic and crisis of lack of treatment facilities looms large. 82.3% of the migrant laborers are worried that they will be caught in the web of debts. Around three-fourth (76.5%) workers fear that there will be widespread hunger. Around half (53.5%) of them are worried that they may have to resort to distress selling of their land and household items and that the women may have to sell off their jewelry.

How to Combat the Covid-19 Emergency?

  • 90.3% of the migrant laborers are of the view that all members of their families of the employable age should be given employment.
  • 93.9% of the returning migrant laborers believe that all of them should be provided subsidized ration. They point out that still there are many families who are not registered with the Public Distribution System (PDS). Further, there are many families whose members’ names are missing in the list of eligible persons.
  • All of the returning migrants expect that the rates of minimum wages must be raised to 150% of that of the existing ones.
  • All of these returning migrants believe quality education and training for children and adolescents shall go a long way in bringing about positive change in the situation of the migrating laborers.
  • Around two-third (63.2%) workers expect to be covered in some pension scheme or be benefited with direct financial support.
  • As many as 87.7% migrant laborers want better health services at the community development block level.
  • 76.8% of the migrant workers desire to be endowed with legal entitlement to employment and land for housing.

LockdownTales Ep #1: Poems, Rhymes, Stories And Songs Of Hope To Reduce Stress Of Kids Secluded From Outdoor Activities

When the whole world is under distress due to Corona pandemic, 22- year- old, Shloka, a resident of Malviya Nagar was concerned about the children especially from underserved communities who are compelled to cut-off from the external world. To release the stress of these children, Shloka and her friends who are a part of volunteer group of Child Rights and You (CRY) decided to make small videos reciting poems, stories, DIY ideas etc for them and shared it on social media.

Shloka had never thought that she would get such a beautiful response against the poem which she recited. The very next day a 13-year-old Shama (name changed) who resides in Bharat Vihar Basti sent a video in reply to Shloka reciting another poem to her. The video of Shama came as an encouragement for these young minds and their small efforts turned into a campaign.  

In the midst of these trying times, while we reach out to each other with messages on social distancing and self-isolation, this group of youngsters were thinking about the huge impact this will have on our children from privileged and underprivileged spaces alike. Not having the volunteers come for sessions, not being able to go to their hobby classes, having limited or no access to their friends etc.

“Keeping this in mind, we the volunteers from CRY are developing a series of online resources both in Hindi and English that our little ones can get access to. My team has all kind of videos from easy cooking, good daily habits, maths tricks, easy at and craft. Our aim just to engage children and make them realize that they are not alone in times like this and that we, their mentors, are looking forward to watching them learn and grow even while we can’t physically meet them everyday”, said 20-year-old, Areeba Khan, who resides in Okhla.

The campaign has already started getting a lot of responses and volunteers and their friends across the capital are now making more and more such resources for the children.

Another volunteer said “I felt heart-warming when we started getting responses on our videos. It also gave us the opportunity to engage ourselves to do something productive, while being quarantined at our house”, said 19-year-old, Mrityunjay Kandpal.

Children who might not have experienced such situation where they are restricted to go out for days might be facing certain uneasiness as well. With the intent to add some fun and learning in the daily routine of these children our volunteers have decided to produce small engaging fun videos.

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Folktrails Ep #4: Tale of a Band bringing soulful music from the forests of Bastar

In this episode, we are going to hear the music of Bastar, which is based on the sounds of the jungle. Bastar is one of the biggest tribal belts of India famous for its greenery, ancient culture and also infamous for Naxal problems. The band named after its region Bastar preserves hundreds of years of old music traditions of tribal people. The band is also promoting peace in the Naxal affected region.

Photo- Bastar Band

The band founded by veteran theatre artist and Padam Shri Awardee Anoop Ranjan Pandey. As the band was originated in Naxal dominated area, the founder had to face a lot of struggle to form a team and take the band to national and international platforms.

The tribes have preserved their music for thousands of years and the music is still pure and unchanged. They discovered this music from their encounters in the jungle. Bastar Band’s journey started with documentation of the varied music found in the area. The founder of the band Anoop traveled across the Bastar region to explore the music and collected a number of songs and indigenous instruments. He then formed a team of tribal people from across the region.

It was not easy to form a band in the Naxal affected region due to in conducive circumstances. The objective of the Bastar Band is to bring peace in the area and they go by the cry ‘Banduk chhodo-Dhol pakdo’ meaning ( Quit guns and pick up drums). The presentations of Bastar Band have been widely acclaimed throughout the world. The band had gained a lot of popularity after performing at the opening ceremony of commonwealth games hosted in India in the year 2010.

Photo- Bastar Band

So this was the forth episode of folk trails. Leave your views about the episode in the comment section.

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छत्तीसगढ़ के आदिवासी बच्चों की पहल, होस्टल में बनाया किचन गार्डन, रोज एक घंटे मेहनत कर अपने लिए उगा रहे सब्जियां

कांकेर जिले के चारामा ब्लॉक स्थित पण्डरीपानी गांव में स्थित प्री-मैट्रिक आदिवासी बालक छात्रावास में विद्यार्थियों ने मिलकर पोषण वाटिका बनाई है। छात्रावास की इमारत के पीछे के खाली जगह को इन्होंने तैयार कर इसमें पोषण से भरे विभिन्न साग-सब्जियों के पौधों लगाए गए। रोजाना एक घंटे की मेहनत कर विद्यार्थी यहां पौधों की देखभाल करते हैं।
छात्रावास के अधीक्षक भीखम सिंह धु्रवे ने बताया कि छुट्टी के दिन छात्रावासी बच्चों द्वारा पोषण वाटिका में एक घंटा श्रमदान किया जाता है। इसके अलावा छात्रावास के कर्मचारियों द्वारा भी अपना योगदान दिया जाता है।


जैविक विधि से उत्पादन
पौधों में सिर्फ  जैविक खाद का प्रयोग किया जाता है। यहां से उत्पादित सब्जियों को छात्रावास के रसोई में प्रयोग किया जाता है। भीखम सिंह धुर्वे बताते हैं कि वाटिका को तैयार करने में कृषि विज्ञान केन्द्र कांकेर का सहयोग लिया गया था। यह वाटिका दो वर्ष में पूरी तरह तैयार हो गई है। 
वाटिका में एक दर्जन सब्जियां, 20 तरह के फल
वाटिका में इस वक्त लौकी, बैंगन, सेम, टमाटर, अदरक, हल्दी, कुंदरू, धनिया, मेथी, पालक, मिर्च, और अरबी-कोचई लगाई गई है, जिसे छात्रावासी बच्चों द्वारा उपयोग किया जा रहा है। बाजार के रासायनिक उर्वरकों से उत्पादित सब्जियों के बजाय वे स्वयं के द्वारा जैविक खाद से उत्पादित सब्जियों का प्रयोग कर रहे हैं, जिससे उनके सेहत में सुधार आया है, साथ ही पर्यावरण संरक्षण के प्रति भावनात्मक जुड़ाव भी हुआ है। इस वाटिका में फलदार पौधे कटहल, मुनगा, केला, पपीता, अमरूद, जामुन, काजू, बादाम, लीची, मौसंबी, चीकू, अनार, बेल, नारियल, आंवला, शहतूत, आम, नींबू, इमली और सीताफल इत्यादि के पौधे भी लगाए गए हैं। जिले के कलेक्टर केएल चौहान ने पोषण वाटिका के इस स्वरूप को सभी आश्रम-छात्रावासों में भी लागू करने के निर्देश दिए हैं।

Child Labour: With more than 7 lakh child labourers, MP among top 5 states in employing children

To understand the status of implementation and impact of recent amendments in Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act (CLPRA) 2016 in Madhya Pradesh, the Campaign against Child Labour (CACL), Hifazat Network in collaboration with CRY – Child Rights and organised a state level consultation in Bhopal on Saturday.
Representatives from Police Department of Madhya Pradesh, Department of Labour Madhya Pradesh, Childline and various Civil Society Organisations participated in the one-day long consultation at Pastoral Centre of Bhopal.
The CLPRA 2016 bans all child labour upto the age of 14 years. However, it makes an exception where a child is permitted to work only to help family, in family enterprise or as a child artist after school hours or during vacations.
Also, the current list of hazardous and non-hazardous occupations and processes (derived from the Factories Act 1948) is seen to have been framed considering the risks and challenges of the working adults but not the adolescents, and hence needs a thorough relook.

In the wake of recent amendments in Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act 2016, CACL, and Hifazat held a state level consultation in collaboration with CRY – Child Rights and You, where stakeholders converge to analyse status of implementation of CLPRA and the way forward
Photo- CRY


Addressing the consultation, Assistant Labour Commissioner, Bhopal Jasmine Ali said “According to Census 2011, Madhya Pradesh in among top 5 states where highest number of child labourers was registered. However, we are committed to improve this ranking and make MP child labour free. The work plan to end child labour is in place now and targets have been fixed for every district. We are constantly trying to make, the operational issues less complicated and fixing responsibility of police to register the FIR is one among the steps taken in this direction”
Talking about ground realities related to child labour in the state, senior IPS officer, Dr GK Pathak said “We have law in place to curb child labour but there is a need to strengthen the implementation process. Especially, in rural Madhya Pradesh, there is a need to develop a system where every child not attending school even for a small span of time should be tracked. Most importantly, while, rescue efforts are essential but without proper rehabilitation we cannot ensure a safe and happy childhood”.
According to the Census 2011, MP recorded total 7,00,239 child labourers. As MP is among 5 states that contribute in over 50% of the working children country, it becomes really important to understand the implications of amended CLPRA in the state.


Over 50% of the working children is concentrated in just 5 states (Census 2011)
Photo- CRY

Sharing his views on the status of child labour, Programme Head, CRY (North), Subhendu Bhattacharya said, “India’s national target set in National Plan of Action for Children (NPAC) 2016 as well as Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) clearly states that it will make all efforts to eliminate child labour by 2025. On the other hand according to census 2011, MP registered more than 7 lakh child labourers. The census also states that 60% child labour in the nation is concentrated in agriculture and allied sectors. Thus, in a state like MP where agriculture is the prime occupation it becomes really important to recognize and find solutions to curb child labour in agriculture as it is a huge challenge for children to balance work and education”.
“According to Sustainable Development Goals child labour should completely stop by 2025. It is a matter of concern how state government is going to do it when government does not even have exact numbers of child labourers”, shared State Convener of CACL, Rajeev Bhargava.
CACL members expressed that, the amendment in CLPRA Act 2016 fails to address its purported objective of prohibition of child labour from all occupations and processes. The legislation does not put family & family-based occupations, agriculture and allied sectors, sports & entertainment industry under the purview of the hazardous / non-hazardous list, legalising such work.
“The only way we can change the child labour scenario in MP is by working together to ensure children complete their formal education, so that they are not pushed to enter labour, and this cannot happen without total eradication of child labour from the country. The recent amendments in CLPRA needs a relook and we are ready to work with government and other stakeholders to find solutions and alternatives for the same,” Ashok Kumar, National Advocacy Convener at CACL, concluded.

CRY study: Almost Half of Adolescents Addicted to Internet

One in every three adolescents who were exposed to internet has gone through negative experiences of some kind or the other, a recent study conducted by CRY – Child Rights and You has revealed.
Findings of the study further suggest that a staggering 75 per cent among the adolescent users have no clear knowledge of the minimum age required for creating any Social Media (SM) accounts; and as many as two among every five users are open to accept requests from friends of friends and/or complete strangers, thus becoming more vulnerable to online threats and hazards.

Credit: PA


In a bid to assess the impact of internet and to study the pattern of its usage among adolescents of Delhi and NCR, and also to understand the benefits and risks involved, CRY – Child Rights and You, a 40-year-old Indian non-profit organization has recently conducted an exploratory study in collaboration with Forum for Learning and Action with Innovation and Rigour (FLAIR). The study is named ‘Online Safety and Internet Addiction: A Study Conducted Amongst Adolescents in Delhi-NCR’. Findings of the study have revealed important trends associated to internet usage, safety and addiction among adolescents.

Study Highlights
• 1 in every 3 adolescent go through negative experiences at cyber spaces
• Almost half of the adolescent users (48%) display any level of addiction to the Internet
• 75% among the adolescent users lack proper knowledge of the minimum age required for creating Social Media accounts
• 93% of the adolescents in Delhi-NCR have access to the internet at their home


The study that was conducted among 630 adolescents across eight schools in Delhi-NCR within the age group of 13 to 18 years showed that adolescents had considerably easy access to the Internet, with 93 per cent of the respondents accessing internet at their residence. It also revealed that 60 per cent of the boys and 40 per cent of the girls among the respondents owned their own device. Almost half of the respondents reportedly used two or more devices to access the Internet.
Explaining the objective behind the study, Soha Moitra, the Regional Director of CRY (North) said, “Online safety emerges as an important protection aspect to the well-being of children and youth. While, CRY recognises that the internet is a vital medium for participation and expression of children, it is the duty of parents, communities, the state, and the society at large to ensure that children are both protected and empowered to protect themselves from online addiction and threats. This was the premise of undertaking the study, where we intended to understand children’s knowledge, practices and lived experiences of the online world.”

PHOTO: THOMAS KOEHLER/PHOTOTHEK VIA GETTY IMAGES


The study further highlighted that 80 per cent of the boys and 59 per cent of the girls had social media accounts, but nearly three-fourth of them across the gender divide had no proper knowledge of minimum age for creating social media accounts.
According to Soha Moitra, the extensive exposure of under-age users to the cyber-space raises a serious concern. “In the Indian context, the usage of internet among the masses (adults and children) has grown exponentially over the last decade. While this growth is fantastic since it opens up massive avenues of opportunities for people, concerns over online safety continue to linger and manifest themselves in increasingly sophisticated ways,” she said.
Talking about the way forward, Soha said that the report demonstrates that the threats of various internet-harms are undisputable. There is a lot of work to be done to recognise, understand and address them adequately at all levels of family, community and the state.
“The objective of ensuring online safety of children can be  achieved through stringent policies and legal provisions addressing the issues of empowerment and knowledge enhancement of children and communities, and strengthening the monitoring and redressal system in order to ensure that the online world is an enabling and protective environment for people, especially children”, she concluded.

Some Trends as Revealed by the Study

  • 40 per cent of the respondents used Internet as a studying-aid, while 38 per cent of them used it as a resource for extra-curricular activities.
  • 76 per cent of the respondents used internet for less than two hours per day. Eight percent of the respondents said that they accessed the Internet for more than four hours a day.
  • 80 per cent of the boys and 59 per cent of the girls had social media accounts. 31 per cent of the users had more than two accounts.
  • Three in every five adolescents (63 per cent) of the respondents said that they accepted friendship/connect request only from people they knew, while the rest said they accepted requests from friends of friends and strangers.
  • According to the study, home is the place where maximum access to the internet happens from. More than 93 per cent of the respondents said that they accessed the internet from their residence.
  • One is every three adolescent users reported going through negative experience on the internet, while around 10 per cent of them disclosed being subjected to cyber-bullying.
  • Only one in every two adolescents reported cyber-bullying incidents. It is also noteworthy that cyber-bullying was seen less among adolescents who did not have social media accounts and who did have knowledge about NCERT guidelines for Internet Safety. However, they experienced it due to some or other reason.
  • Only 35 per cent of the respondents had knowledge about NCERT Internet Safety Guidelines.
  • Nearly 90 per cent of respondents knew the minimum age for buying SIM cards.
  • Findings also suggest that maximum number of respondents accessed the internet from their parent’s devices.
  • According to the study, internet addiction tended to increase with age and was greater amongst those adolescents who had their own room at home, had their own mobile devices, and did have both working parents.
  • The study suggests that 48 per cent of the respondents displayed any level of addiction to the internet, while, severe internet addiction was observed in only 1 per cent of the respondents, mainly among boys. Among the internet addicted, majority of them (70 per cent) were adolescents.
  • Study also says around 10 percent of adolescents reported being victims of hacking of profile/misuse of account, but this decreased sharply with age. One in four adolescents also reported seeing a morphed image or video, and only 50 percent of them reported the incident.

Health Checkup After 28 Yrs: C’garh Team Walks 15KM To Reach Bastar Village, Finds 70% Population Suffering From Malaria

Under ambitious Malaria-free Bastar Campaign, Health Department’s team is going all the way to remote far-flung areas to provide malaria diagnosis test and treatment facilities. Health Department’s team walked around 15 Kms on a hilly path to reach remote village Gogunda of Konta block in Sukma district for malaria test.

The team held three-day check-up camp in the village and did malaria test of 856 individuals, out of which 587 were diagnosed with malaria and were provided immediate medical treatment. They were given ACT-kit and primaquin tablets. At the camp, 87 children were vaccinated. The team also distributed mosquito nets to villagers.

The team of Health department conducting malaria test in village

Gogunda people informed that health department team has visited their village after 28 years. Under Malaria-free Bastar Campaign, 15 members of the department’s team reached the village on January 28. The path to the village was extremely difficult, so the team members had to travel 15 Kms on motorcycle from Samsetti village to Pariya-Gadgadpara, but there was no pathway further to ride motorcycle, so they had to walk nearly 15 Kms on a hilly path to reach Gogunda village. Team members kept encouraging each other all the way to go on despite the difficulties.

Villagers with health team

The team included District Programme Officer Rohit Sharma, Konta Block Medical Officer Dr Kapil Dev Kashyap, Chirayu Team’s Dr Ved Prakash, Rural Medical Assistant (RMA) and Supervisor. They were accompanied by Gogunda Sarpanch, Secretary and Aanganbadi workers, who showed them the way to village.

Member of health team marking house of village as ‘diagnosed’

During the three-day camp in Gogunda, when the health department team fell short of the test kits, then ANM and two Mitanins of Samsetti Sub-Health Centre travelled nearly 30 Kms on motorcycle and by walking to bring the kits required at the camp.

ट्विटर पर देशभर के किसानों ने चलाया हैशटैग, किसान को दिन में बिजली दो

राजस्थान, मध्यप्रदेश सहित कई राज्यों के किसान सिंचाई के लिए रात में मिलने वाली बिजली से परेशान हैं। कंपकपाती सर्दी में आधी रात को सिंचाई करने खेत जाना इनके लिए जानलेवा साबित हो रहा है।

मध्यप्रदेश के झाबुआ के पेटलावाद ब्लॉक स्थित गोपालपुर पंचायत में शाम के वक्त बच्चे-बुजुर्ग सभी अपने घरों में लौट रहे हैं। इसकी वजह है यहां की कड़कड़ाती ठंड। रात में गांव का तापमान 5 डिग्री सेल्सियस के नीचे पहुंच जाता है। हालांकि, जब सब लोग घर जा रहे हैं तभी गांव के कुछ लोग ऐसे भी हैं जिन्हें ऐन शाम के वक्त खेत की तरफ निकलना पड़ता है। गांव के दो किसान दुलेसिंह खापेड़ और गोपाल सिंह खापेड़ अपनी टॉर्च, एक माचिस और कुछ सीखी लकड़ियों के साथ खेत की तरफ निकल चुके हैं। पूछने पर बताते हैं कि शाम में 8 बजे के बाद कभी भी बिजली आ सकती है और इस वक्त फसल की सिंचाई करना बहुत जरूरी है। गांव के बाकी किसान भी ठंड से बचने की व्यवस्था कर खेतों की तरफ निकल रहे हैं। ठंड से बचने के लिए ये खेत की मेड़ पर अलाव जलाते हैं और बिजली आने का इंतजार करते हैं।

झाबुआ जिले के किसान दुले सिंह और गोपाल सिंह बिजली आने के इंतजार में अलाव जलाकर बैठे हैं

मध्यप्रदेश के दूसरे इलाकों के किसान भी बिजली के शेड्यूल की वजह से रात में ही पंप चलाकर सिंचाई करते हैं। देवास के सतवास गांव के किसान राजेश राठौर बताते हैं कि उनके यहां कागजो में तो ठंड 4 डिग्री के करीब बताते हैं लेकिन खुले खेत में पानी लगाते समय लगता है कि पारा माइनस में चला गया हो। हाथ पांव एकदम सुन्न हो जाते हैं, लेकिन पर्याप्त वोल्टेज के साथ बिजली रात में ही आती है तो सिंचाई करना मजबूरी है। इंदिरापुरी गांव के किसान मोजीराम नायक ने बताया कि सिंचाई के समय उन्हें फसलों के ऊपर बर्फ की सफेद परत दिखती है, जिससे ठंड का अंदाजा लगाया जा सकता है।  

हरदा जिले के कई बड़े किसानों ने सिंचाई का काम मजदूरों के ऊपर छोड़ा हुआ है। वहां के गावों में मजदूर खेतों में झोपड़ी बनाकर सिंचाई करने का काम करते हैं।

देवास जिले के ठानी गांव का किसान राजेश राठौर रात में 10 बजे खेत में पानी लगाता हुआ

दरअसल, ठंड बढ़ने के साथ फसल की सिंचाई जरूरी हो जाती है। जवाहरलाल नेहरू कृषि विश्वविद्यालय के प्रोफेसर डॉ. गोपी कृष्णा दास बताते हैं कि इस वक्त खेतों में सिंचाई करने से जमीन के भीतर की गर्मी उपर आ जाती है और फसल को पाला से बचने में सहायता मिलती है। अगर ऐसे वक्त में सिंचाई नहीं हुआ तो रातोंरात फसल खराब होने का खतरा रहता है।

अब ट्विटर पर चल रही मुहीम

किसान स्थानीय स्तर पर दिन में बिजली देने की मांग उठा रहे हैं। इंदौर, हरदा, देवास सहित कई जिलों में जनसुनवाई के दौरान इस तरह की मांग की गई, लेकिन अब तक कोई सुनवाई नहीं हुई है। यह परेशानी सिर्फ मध्यप्रदेश की नहीं, बल्कि राजस्थान, हरियाणा, उत्तरप्रदेश सहित कई राज्यों के किसानों की है। परेशानी से तंग आकर किसानों ने एकसाथ ट्विटर पर हैशटैग ‘किसान को दिन में बिजली दो’ के साथ महीम छेड़ रखी है। पिछले 10 दिन से रोज 1000 से अधिक ट्वीट के साथ किसान इस अभियान को चला रहे हैं।

उज्जैन जिले के खेतों में इस तरह ओस की बूंदें ठंड की वजह से जम जाती हैं।

भारतीय किसान संघ से जुड़े युवा किसान शुभम पटेल भी ट्विटर के इस अभियान से जुड़े हैं। ग्राउंड टेल्स के साथ बातचीत में उन्होंने बताया कि ट्वीट कर किसान अपना हक मांग रहे हैं। जिस तरह इंडस्ट्री को दिन में बिजली की सुविधा मिलती है उसी तरह किसानों को भी मिलनी चाहिए। इस मुहीम में सिंचाई के समय राजस्थान के बारा के दो किसानों की मृत्यु का मामला भी उठाया जा रहा है और रात में सिंचाई को किसानों के लिए जानलेवा बताया जा रहा है।

क्या है सरकारों का रुख

मध्यप्रदेश में इस वर्ष अक्टूबर से पहले दिन में 10 घंटे बिजली दी जाती थी, लेकिन किसानों ने मांग की थी कि भूजलस्तर कम होने की वजह से दिन में एक साथ बिजली देने से उनके बोरवेल सूख जाते हैं। मांग को मानते हुए रात में 6 घंटे बिजली की व्यवस्था की गई जो कि ठंड आने के बावजूद जारी है। मानसून के बाद भूजलस्तर सुधरा है लेकिन फिर भी बिजली का शेड्यूल नहीं बदला। उर्जा विभाग के अधिकारी ऐसा करने में आधारभूत ढ़ांचा की कमी और तकनीकी खामियों की वजह से असक्षम है। मध्यप्रदेश सरकार ने किसानों की मांग पर अब तक कोई विचार नहीं किया है। राजस्थान के मुख्यमंत्री अशोक गहलोत ने इस साल की शुरुआत में ही किसानो को दिन में बिजली देने की व्यवस्था करने को कहा था, लेकिन अबतक बिजली विभाग की तरफ से ठोस कदम नहीं उठाए गए हैं। 

NCRB Records 388 Crimes against Children Each Day

More than One lakh 40 thousand crimes against children have been recorded in 2018, which means as many as 388 crimes were committed each day in the year. This is revealed by the National Crime Records Bureau’s (NCRB) latest report, published on 9th January 2020. Overall, crimes against children has increased steeply over 500% in the decade over 2008-2018, from 22,500 cases recorded in 2008 to 141764 cases in 2018.
The other startling fact remains is that in 2017-2018 crimes against children rose by a sharp 10%, while the overall crime in India rose by just 1.4% over the same time-span. In terms of the rate of cognizable crimes against children (rate of crime is population adjusted – it gives number of crimes for every 1 lakh population of children), India witnessed a rise from 28.9 to 31.8.

Representative image

Further in-depth analysis of the NCRB 2018 report done by CRY – Child Rights and You reveals that kidnapping and abduction still stands at the top of all crime heads against children. Overall, 62,668 number of K&A (kidnapping and abduction) cases were registered in the year, which saw a rise of 15.7 per cent over the previous year (2017). 
Crimes under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act stands at the second single largest category of crimes committed against children with 39,827 cases registered in one year. In addition to crimes reported under POCSO Act,  9312 cases of rape under section 376 IPC were also recorded.  

Analysing the latest NCRB data, Priti Mahara, Director of Policy Research and Advocacy at CRY – Child Rights and You said, “While on the one hand, the increasing numbers of crimes against children are extremely alarming, it also suggests an increasing trend in reporting which is a positive sign as it reflects better awareness among people. It also provides a direction in which government interventions must be made and evidence needs to be created. While some major efforts have been taken to ensure child protection, a lot more is needed to see expected results on the ground.”

Representative image



Cases under Cyber Crimes / Information Technology Act against children also saw a steep rise of 48 per cent over the previous year, as 117 cases were reported under this crime head. 
A closer look at the state-wise segregation of crimes against children reveals that the five big states, namely Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi and Bihar account for 51 per cent of all crimes in the country. While Uttar Pradesh tops the list with 19,936 recorded crimes (14% of total crimes), Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra are the close second and third with 18,992 and 18,892 crimes registered respectively. Delhi tops the list when it comes to rate of crime against children at 147.2 while the national average is only 31.8.
The report also suggests that children are in no way more protected in the shelter homes. Cases of sexual harassments in shelter homes against women and children reportedly increased by 30 per cent, from 544 cases recorded in 2017 to 707 cases in 2018. More worryingly, 32 per cent of cases against children under the Juvenile Justice (JJ) ACT were committed by care takers / in-charges of Juvenile Homes. 
A total of 67,134 children were reported missing in 2018 of which nearly 70% were girls.
Deliberating on what’s to be done, Priti Mahara suggested that “Financial investments must be adequately increased with a focus on prevention of crimes against children and the identification of vulnerable children and families. Strengthening community level child protection system is also a key to prevention. While there is growing evidence of the precarious lives that children in India are leading, it is essential that this evidence is used to effectively inform policy and programme initiatives”

Bhopal Gas Tragedy: Courts Asks MHA Why No Summons Served To Dow Chemical

The first class magistrate of Bhopal District Court (Heeralal Alawa) issued summons to Under Secretary, Legal Cell-IS II Division, Ministry of Home Affairs, Govt of India to present itself on 20 February 2020 and explain why it has not been able the serve the summons to The Dow Chemical Company under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty since 2014. This summons to MHA has also been issued on the application of Bhopal Group for Information & Action (BGIA)

Members of BGIA had hosted a protest on occasion of 35th anniversary of Bhopal Gas Tragedy (File Photo/Manish Chandra Mishra)

Despite 6 summons issued by the Bhopal District Court since 2014, CBI has not been able to produced the authorised representative of Dow Chemical Company in the Bhopal District court. The Ministry of Home Affairs which is the responsible agency to serve the summons to a accused living in another country under the MLAT has not taken a single step towards invoking provisions in MLAT to ensure that summons against Dow Chemical, USA are indeed served by the Department of Justice, USA.

The first class magistrate of Bhopal District Court (Heeralal Alawa) issued summons to Under Secretary, Legal Cell-IS II Division, Ministry of Home Affairs (source- BGIA)

The Bhopal Group for Information & Action (BGIA), an NGO working for survivors of the gas leak tragedy, had filed an application in this regard. The representatives of BGIA expressed satisfaction that finally the Judge has summoned the representative of Ministry of Home Affairs regarding the inordinate delay in being able to bring a representative of The Dow Chemical Company, USA. The criminal proceedings against Dow Chemical to make Union Carbide Corporation, USA, its wholly owned subsidiary, appear in the ongoing criminal case on the disaster of 1984 which has killed over 25000 people.