Vidarbha Centre for Labour Concerns

Vidarbha Center for Labour Concerns (VCLC). A initiative of NCCI
1.0 BACKGROUND :
A decade and half ago the Govt. of Maharashtra under the banner of the Maharashtra Industrial Development
Corporation (MIDC) proposed a very ambitious industrial development programme for the Vidarbha region. The
vidarbha region which became part of the Maharashtra State, when the re‐organisation of States was done in 1960‐61
has remained a very industrially backward region because of the step‐motherly treatment from the leadership of the
State Govt. The proposal to develop what is now called Butibori Industrial Area (BIA) is slated as the largest industrial
estate of Asia has been in the making over the last decade.
To meet the demand of water needed for the Buti bori industrial area, land near Borkhedi village was acquired for the
proposed construction of a reservior which is known as Wadgaon Reservoir, built by Maharashtra Irrigation
Department.Due to the land aquisition for the above purpose residents of seven villages were displaced and were
settled in the Turakmari village.
One of the first industries to come up in Buti bori industries was the Indo Rama Synthetics Ltd. A number of other
medium and small scale industries have grown in the meanwhile. When land was acquired for the BIA, the State Govt.
had given an assurance that one member of the each family will be given a job in the industry. This has not happend.
The present labour requirement is met by transporting industrial labour from Nagpur and employing migrant labours
from other States. The workers are provided with dormatory space in over crowded so‐called “Hostels”.
Since the Buti bori industrial area is a new development, the management in the area takes a very callous attitude
towards labour welfare. Hiring and firing is a norm and so is contract labour, gross violation of Bombay Industrial
Reltions Act (BIR Act) and provisions of other labour legislations are the order of the day.
2.0 INTRODUCTION TO THE PEOPLE AND THEIR PROBLEMS IN BUTIBORI :
Buti bori is located about 35 K.M. from Nagpur city on the Nagpur Wardha main road artery. There is also a railway
station by the same name but is about 5 ‐ 7 K.M. away from the Buti bori Industrial Area. There is no regular bus service
between the Rly. station and the Buti bori Industrial Area. Commuting by train is therefore very inconvenient. The Govt.
for the purpose of Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation acquired about 20,000 acres of agricultural land
from the villagers,however the villages have not been displaced.
‐ Loss of livelihood : In the given situation the resident have lost their source of livelihood and have been forced in to
conditions of poverty.
‐ Health facilities : Due to non‐availability of Govt. Hospital the workers and their families have to go to the private
practitioners, which became a costly affair.
‐ Education : There are Gram Panchayat schools upto primary levels in the nearby vicinity of BIA. There is also a
residential school know does not cater to the needs of the working class but the management sector of the employees.
‐ Labour Scene : Since the BIA is a new development the Management in the area takes a callous attitude towards
labour welfare. Hiring and firing is a norm and so is contract labour, gross violation of the BIR Act, and provisions of
other labour legislations are the order of the day.3.0 THE STATE OF THE WORKING CLASS :
It was in 1991 that the Indian State announced its “New Industrial and Economic Policy” (NIEP) characterised by
Liberalisation and Globalisation. This NIEP has had a very negative impact on the working class.

  •  Introduction of capital intensive technology ‐ leading to loss of jobs.
  •  Industries adopting a cut back policy ‐ leading to loss of jobs.
  •  Industries adopting a golden hand shake policy ‐ leading to loss of jobs.
  •  Change in employment pattern ‐ no direct employment ‐ creation of contract labourers.

These forms of employment have created a large pool of daily wage earners who enjoy no benefits of

  •  Provident Fund
  •  Gratuity
  •  Leave facility
  •  Health Coverage
  •  Housing facilities
  •  Accident coverage.

This has led to the creation of tremendous hardship and misery for a growing number of workers. A large section of
these workers are migrant workers coming from neighbouring states, towns and villages.4.0 INTRODUCTION TO VIDARBHA CENTRE FOR LABOUR CONCERNS
Some concerned individuals who were coming together in the last year to study the Bible were motivated to manifest
their faith in action, this was the origin of Vidarbha Centre for Labour Concerns. Our faith promotes us to be with the
cause of the toiling people. Towards this goal, Vidarbha Centre for Labour Concerns commits itself.4.1 PROGRAMME :
Vidarbha Centre for Labour Concerns proposes to engage with the working class in Buti bori Industrial area and the
neighbouring Industries. Its primary emphasis will be the unorganised workers. The Vidarbha Centre for Labour
Concerns shall also engage in solidarity work with the organised workers locally, regionally, nationally and
internationally.4.2 OBJECTIVES :

  •  To initiate a learning process with workers on Labour Legislations.
  •  To initiate labour education in the following areas of concern :

‐ Political
‐ Social
‐ Economic
‐ Cultural

  •  To assist the workers with legal aid.
  •  To struggle with and for redressal of injustice inflicted on the working class.
  •  To restore and build “Human Dignity”.

4.3 PROCESS
To initiate and build a workers centre in Butibori Industrial Area.4.4 ACTIVITY Please refer to Annexure ‘A’5.0 COMMUNITY BASED PROGRAMMES5.1 Background :
Around and in the Butibori Industrial area are many villages. The VCLC has identified the following villages to work with :
1. Turakmari
2. Tembri
3. Satgaon
4. Takalghat
5. ButiboriThese villages are in the 5 – 7 k.m. radius of the VCLC Centre and are easily accessible.
The situation in Butibori Industrial Area and its vicinity is in a very bad state due to the present rapidly changing sociopolitical
and economical system. The over exploitation of natural resources for economic growth by the TNCs by
acquiring land from the Agricultural workers is displacing them from their own land. There is no work for people who
used to be expert in Agriculture, there is massive growth in unemployment of men, women and youth. The overall
impact of Industrialisation has been negative as it has marginalised the people and taken away their traditional means of
livelihood. It has also taken away their sense of dignity and community life. The dominant impact of the Globalisation
process has been to take away the initiative of self determination of the people. Communities are helpless, powerless
and have become commodities in the hands of the politicians and the industrialists.5.2 WOMEN IN THE COMMUNITY
Though the women constitutes nearly half of the total population in India, the majority of women in our society are
socially, culturally, economically and politically marginalised. Women are denied equal rights to work, wages, property
and are forced to live a life full of indignity and misery. Inspite of suffering the various forms of exploitation the women
constitute significantly to the management of household, agricultural work, industrial work and more over by upholding
basic good values. Inspite of her contribution at every level of life the male dominated society puts her into sociopolitical‐
economic dependency. Women’s views and concerns are over‐looked by this new changing phase.5.2.1 Mahila Mandal (Womens Organisation)
This programme is aimed at organising women for their development in village based women organisations.
The major aspects of this activity will be :
(i) Awareness Programme (social, political, economical & Cultural).
(ii) Health Education.
(iii) Saving Credit Societies (Bachat Gat).
(vi) Skill Training.

  •  Agarbatti Making – incense stick.
  •  Candle Making.
  •  Pickle Making
  •  Make value added products for sale.

All these activities will lead to the formation of an active Mahila Panchayat (local self governance) which can
actively work alongside with the village Panchayat.5.2.2: Community Health Programme :
The Community Health programme will be conducted in five villages nearby. This programme will be focussed
mainly on Preventive Health Care, Nutritious food practices, practice of hygiene, adoption of traditional
alternative medicines.
(i) Health Education :
This will be the most important aspect of the programme. The group of the selected villages will be given the
basic education and awareness through constant and rigorous house to house contact programme. Frequent
village level group gathering, training camps about Health Care, Hygiene, Population Control, Nutritious Food
etc. Non‐formal and attractive methods will be used to achieve the goal. Discussion, quizzes, street theatre,
folk art forms etc. would be the means of training.
(ii) Health Care and Assistance :
Medical camps will be conducted every month in the selected five villages. Treatment for needy patients,
preventive vaccination will be provided from this camp. Further maternity assistance and guidance to the
seriously affected patients will be carried out. The village Midwife (Dai) will carry out the programme with the
active support of village volunteers. Help from Government Medical College in Nagpur will be taken.ACTIVITY

  •  Cultural Activity
  •  Street Theatre / Drama /Folk Songs / Folk Plays
  •  Shelter
  •  For Migrant Workers in distress
  •  Services
  •  Writing applications / Writing letters /A Postal Address /Counselling /First Aid Centre
  •  Train Union Education
  •  Industriaql law / Contract Law /Industrial Safety/ Workers Rights, Duties/ Industrial Pollution / Relationship with
  • ndustrial workers/Agricultural Workers / Service Sector/ Unorganized labour / Why Poverty ?
  • Credit Union
  •  Small Savings Scheme
  •  Women’s Training
  •  Mahila Mandal / Women’s Credit Cooperation / Balwadi
  •  Recreation
  •  Reading Room / Outdoor Games / Indoor Games / Circulating Library
  •  Legal Aid
  •  Legal Education / Legal Assistance
  •  Health
  •  Weekly check‐up by doctor / First Aid

6.0 COMMUNICATION ADDRESS : Mr. Rajesh Jadhav
Coordinator ‐ V.C.L.C.
NCCI.

Mobile: 09637210666

Email: labourrajesh@rediffmail.com

ESHA

Back Ground of ESHA: The Ecumenical Solidarity for HIV & AIDS (ESHA) is a unique programme of the National Council of Churches in India. The Church’s response in India towards addressing HIV & AIDS took a historical step forward when a policy on HIV & AIDS was adopted and adapted during the XXVI Quadrennial Assembly of the NCCI in 2008 paving the way for the shaping of ESHA programme, which works directly under the General Secretary.

When we refer to ourselves as ‘the Church’, or ‘the body of Christ’, we do so as congregations, communities, and collections of people who want to be identified together because of our faith in Jesus. This body of Christ is living with HIV, and we need to learn to live with this identity and, within this identity, seek the fullness of life for all humanity, which is the gift of God. ESHA intends to help Churches and Christian Institutions to commit to working towards HIV prevention in partnership with others – knowing that we need to work alongside other institutions and organisations, multi-sectoral and multi-faith as well. We need to empower our congregations, removing stigma and discrimination, delivering care and support. Knowing we have been insensitive to the inability of women, children, and the most marginalised, to exercise real choices, and that in many places, marriage and gender-based violence are risk factors for HIV transmission – we wish to bring this to the forefront of the church’s involvement. The Virus has taught us that the health of all communities is connected to the health of the most vulnerable and marginalised in our societies, and we need to help to obtain universal access to crucial services for people living with HIV, so that they become less vulnerable, and are enabled to be meaningful contributors within the Church and society.

Future work of this Program beyond 2015: in collaboration with our member-Churches, institutions, networks, people living with HIV and other partners, we intend to take the issue of stigma and discrimination to a larger sphere, Inclusiveness to a  new level. From HIV and AIDS to those who are most affected by such marginalisation- dalits, the otherwise abled, the Lesbian-Gay-Transgender-Bisexual communities [LGBT]-  these are often referred to as “ Key Affected People” or KAPs, ESHA and NCCI will take out a strong message.

Objectives of ESHA:-

  • Zero discrimination & Zero Stigma towards all
  • Inclusivity of PLWHA & Sexual minorities in churches, society, work place etc.
  • Gender Equality  and working to bring acceptance to the LGBT Community
  • Implementing the Policy on Education, passed by the NCCI in Kolkata in January, 2014
  • Working towards Interfaith Youth Programs

Activities we are covering in ESHA are:-

  • Work Place Policy.
  • Policy on Education
  • Social Inclusion Tools
  • Interfaith Youth Action Team
  • Church leaders and KAP’s [CLAP]

Rev. Dr. Roger Gaikwad – Project holder

Contact:  

North East India Action Desk

North East India Action Desk of NCCI
TOWARDS PEACE BUILDING AND CONFLICT TRANSFORMATION

 North East India is said to be the land of Seven Sister States: Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Manipur, and Nagaland. (Sikkim may be considered as a brother state).  The root causes of ‘un-peace’ in North-East India, to name a few, are, a general neglect of the socio-economic and political well-being of the people of the region, tensions between the north-eastern states and the central government, the ill-effects of globalization, tensions between native tribal people and migrants from other parts of India, disrespect to the identity and dignity of tribals in particular, tribal disunity, land and territorial conflicts, human trafficking and abuse of human rights. Such situations have given rise to movements for asserting the identity and rights of the people – finding expression even in some insurgency movements –  and the imposition of the  Armed Forces Special Powers Act of 1958 (AFSPA).

Therefore, peacemaking has become an urgent concern of life for the people, and educating people to be peace-makers should be the ongoing mission. There is no doubt, in the present context of tensions and violence, the message of peace is most needed in our time. Jesus Christ identified himself with the suffering victims of violence. And yet his cross of suffering for the cause of justice and reform led to the resurrection, a new expression of the reign of God.  We have to develop a relevant theology of the Cross, Reconciliation, Peace building, and Transformation. Violence and injustice are two sides of the same coin. They are in opposition to peace and justice. In this fragmented world of ours today, there is yearning for a just society where peace, in the sense of wholeness (Shalom) of individual life, society and creation, prevails. Therefore, those who are committed to the ministry of educating the “people of God”, to love peace and to be peace-builders, should make efforts to encourage all to develop a fresh understanding of and commitment to peace as their priority.  We affirm that it is not enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it is not enough to believe in it; one must work at it. With this affirmation, North East India Action Desk of National Council of Churches in India has started an initiative, to undertake a project for Peace Building and Conflict Transformation in the North East States of India.

This project would include different programs at regional, state and local levels, focusing on issues of conflict-resolution, related to communities and tribes. In this journey towards peace, we intend to accompany all who believe in and live for peace – such as, Churches, different Tribal organizations, NGOs, Women’s organizations, Youth/Student Federations, and people of other faiths. We believe that our endowed task is to be a resourceful community within the wider North East eco-human community by promoting the basic values of life at all levels.

The Ministry of North East India Action Desk of NCCI:

The North East India Action Desk of NCCI will act as a facilitating catalyst, along with constituent members of NCCI from North East India, and with all like-minded bodies and agencies committed to the cause, in promoting peace in the region.

Vision: A society free from discrimination, exploitation and conflict, resolved to stand for justice and peace, experiencing holistic development, and enjoying community harmony.

Objectives:

  1. Undertaking socio-economic and political analysis to enlighten the people about the root causes of un-peace in the region;
  2. Making people realize and appreciate the plurality of ethnic, cultural, and religious plurality, thereby developing a wider sense of ecumenism.
  3. Working together to address concerns of un-peace and engaging in mutual responsibility for building communities of peace.
  4. Research leading to understanding the context of communities, their histories, ways of life and livelihood, and thereby analyzing the causes of dispute and conflict in different regions.
  5. Awareness–building among the people, sensitizing them about related to issues about communal disunity, tribal disputes, insurgency problems, human rights abuse, corruption, etc., through seminars, campaigns and peace walk and finding solution for peace.
  6. Equipping the Church and society with peace-building strategies including legal processes.
  7. Empowering the mindset of the Governments, Churches, FBOs, and NGOs, indeed all people of the region to be ambassadors of peace.
  8. Participating in the Mission of God through the medium of Peace.

 ACTIVITIES:

  1. Awareness-Analysis Seminar/Consultation programs
  2. Documentation via Written/Audio-Visual Format
  3. Peace Training
  4. Legal Awareness/ Legal Education
  5. Peace Festivals
  6. Peace Action Visits
  7. Partnership programs
  8. Christian Education for Peace

CONTACT:

V. Shitovi Sema
Coordinator, NCCI – NEIAD (North East India Action Desk)

Academy for Theology and Missions (ATM) Thilixu Block – II,
Dimapur – 797112. Nagaland
Phone: +91 9774183274  |Email