Aizawl, Aug. 12: The Mizoram Hnathawktu Pawl (workers’ union) has demanded compensation from the state forest department for the tribals whose bamboo shoots had been destroyed in a market in Serchhip district recently.
The union said this utter disregard for the law by the so-called law-keepers is an affront to the peaceful people going about their normal lives.
“The Forest Rights Act is something the forest department should know about and also make the people about. Instead, these officials are acting as if they know nothing about it (the act). Action should be taken against them,” Raphael Lalrinmawia, the president of the union, said during a news conference here today.
He demanded translation of the act into local languages and its distribution among people in the state so that they could learn about the rights they enjoyed with regard to the forest produce in their state.
Lalrinmawia also lambasted the various construction companies working in the state for failing to adhere to labour rights and mistreating their workers, who mostly happen to be migrants.
He said these companies, especially two firms engaging in construction of the Mizoram University complex and the Assam Rifles complex at Zokhawsang, had failed to make payments to their workers despite getting regular payments against bills.
Many workers from these companies had complained about this to the union, he said.
He warned the companies to respect the construction workers’ rights in future and pay them regularly.
At the same time, the union urged the state government to settle the Chiahpuam (fake deposit scam) case, as more than a thousand families had been impoverished by depositing their lifesavings in the firm operated by some fraudsters.