In times of job crisis, Jharkhand sends 1500 workers for BRO projects in Leh-Ladakh
At a time when the entire country is going through an unprecedented unemployment wave triggered by the COVID-19 outbreak, the Jharkhand government has signed an MoU with the Border Roads Organisation. On June 13, CM Hemant Soren flagged off the first train ferrying 1500 workers for the BRO’s Leh-Ladakh project.
Jharkhand has probably become the first state to grab an employment opportunity post the nationwide lockdown. The state government has signed an agreement with the BRO, creating job opportunities for its workers.
During the COVID triggered lockdown, crores of migrant workers and daily wagers had lost their jobs and many were forced to return to their native states.
On Saturday, Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren flagged off the first train from Dumka ferrying around 1500 workers. They will work “on strategic BRO projects in Leh-Ladakh and other regions in the Indo- China border.”
According to the state government, the agreement was signed with the BRO to ensure increased wages and welfare benefits for the workers to be roped in for the BRO projects.
Notably, the local district administrations will directly carry out the registration process for these recruitments rooting out the possibility of middlemen.
Addressing those leaving for the BRO projects on Saturday, CM Soren said, “Our workers have decided to join the BRO when the (Indo-China) border regions are tense. They are not only workers but also foot soldiers of India who will assist in securing the borders (by working in BRO strategic projects).”
He also pointed out that in during pandemic times, when the country is witnessing massive job losses, Jharkhand has managed to create jobs for its workers.
“In times of Corona, employment opportunities have shrunk,” the Jharkhand Chief Minister said. “During this pandemic, in terms of job opportunity, Jharkhand is leading it from the front with help of the Border Roads Organisation.”
According to sources, after the completion of the registration process of workers from Dumka and adjoining district areas, more trains carrying workers will follow.
Meanwhile, the Jharkhand government is also trying to safeguard the rights of the workers leaving for such projects. A memorandum of understanding is expected to be signed between the BRO and the Jharkhand Labour department after consensus from the Defence Ministry.
The Hemant Soren-led Grand Alliance had won the Jharkhand assembly polls in December 2019. Creating job opportunities for the locals was one of the key electoral promises of the Soren-alliance.