Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Koraput, May 5:
Unable to bear a hellish life, 30 migrant labourers including six women of Petal village under Nandapur block in Odisha’s Koraput district, who had gone to work under a contractor in the neighbouring state of Chhattisgarh, managed to escape from the camp and arrived here on Sunday evening.
Talking to mediapersons soon after their arrival, the migrant labourers said one Subular Babu had approached them and taken them to Jagdalpur with a promise to provide them with remunerative employment.
After reaching Jagdalpur, Babu took them to Cocanada in a pick-up van and were handed over to a contractor who enagaged them in the ongoing construction of a hospital.
While the agreement was made for weekly payment of wages to these labourers, the contractor did not make the payment after 10 days of work.
While the promised wages never reached their hands, they were served with stale rice and burnt cabbage curry everyday.
Unable to cope with the situation, these 30 labourers escaped from the camp in the late night hours on Friday and arrived at Chitrakut in Jagdalpur after covering about 20 km distance by foot.
Later, they hired an auto-rickshaw and arrived at the Jagdalpur railway station. Since they did not have enough money to buy tickets, they narrated their story to a ticket collector who allowed them to board the Jagdalpur-Hirakhand Express train.
The labourers arrived at Koraput on Sunday evening.
Strangely, neither the district administration and nor the district Labour Welfare department had any information about the incident.