Raju Ram, a bonded Dalit labourer, begins work at the strike of dawn, along with his wife every day at a brick kiln factory in Daloowala village of Phagi tehsil in Jaipur. He and his pregnant wife used to work for more than 14 hours a day without any pay or rest until recently. Thanks to vigilant action of social activist Nirmal Gorana and Jaipur police, Ram, his wife, another young couple and three children were rescued from the clutches of bonded labour.
Sub-divisional magistrate Sawan Kumar of Phagi said following the tip-off from the social activist Gorana, they had sent a police team to the brick kiln site. “The young couples had accepted an advance and had worked for some months at the kiln. However, when they expressed a desire to return to their homes in Nagaur for Holi, the kiln owner refused them permission. The couples have now been sent home and the rescue certificates too have been issued.”
One family had received an advance of Rs 35,000 some months ago and the other had got a slightly smaller sum. Gorana who has asked for an FIR said the two rescued women were in advanced stages of pregnancy. “The women had to enter the kilns to remove bricks exposing themselves to high temperatures which is cruelty.” The bonded workers said they had already repaid the debts they owed to the kiln owner, and hence, should be allowed to leave the site.