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Steps taken to check migrant workers in M’laya
Correspondent SHILLONG, MAR 15 (NPN):
Published on 16 Mar. 2011 2:58 AM IST
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Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister for Labour Rowell Lyngdoh today said the government has taken steps to check entry migrant workers into the state.
“The government is equally concerned with the issue and steps have been being initiated to see that the state protected from the illegal entry of migrant workers,” Lyngdoh told assembly during the Question Hour.
He said that the government had already notified the licensing authorities, however much more needs to be done for the full implementation of Act.
Earlier, the previous government had approved an amendment to the inter-state migrant workmen regulation Act, 1979 (amended in 1985), giving teeth to the law-enforcing authorities to check influx and regulate of migrants workers in the state.
However, Lyngdoh said that the implementation of the work permits to the migrant workers has been delayed due to lack of funds and manpower in the labour department.
“We have submitted a proposal for nearly Rs 3 crore to the finance department for appointment of more staff and purchase of vehicles to effectively implement the system,” the Labour Minister informed. The work permit scheme, mandatory for local employers to obtain a licence before employing any outside labour. The licence will be issued for 179 days, renewable later. The idea is to ensure that the migrant labour doesn’t stay on indefinitely, acquiring voting rights in the state.
The labour department together with the Deputy Commissioners, the Block Development Officers and police officials would be overseeing the implementation of the work permits by verifying first the Indian citizenship and antecedents of such workers.
Various NGOs of the State are demanding the early implementation of the work permit system to curb the unabated inflow of illegal migrants into the State.
According to the NGOs the coal belt areas have been overwhelmed by non-indigenous people thereby posing a threat to the demography in those areas.

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