Sindh Industrial Relations Act: Farmers’ act yet to be implemented
Mansoor said that most farmers were living below the poverty line in sub-human conditions despite working long hours in the fields. PHOTO: APP
KARACHI: In March 2013, the
province passed the milestone Sindh Industrial Relations Act, which legally identified peasants as workers for the first time in Pakistan’s history. With no rules about its implementation in place, the act has yet to improve the farmers’ situation.
“The workers belonging to the agricultural sector form approximately 60 per cent of the country’s 62 million-strong workforce,” National Trade Union Federation (NTUF) deputy secretary general Nasir Mansoor said during a consultative meeting on Friday. “None of them are registered for health insurance, pension or other schemes and a large number of peasants are steadily turning into mere daily-wage agricultural workers.”
The meeting on the application of labour laws to agricultural workers was organised by the Sindh Agriculture General Workers Association and NTUF at Mehran Hotel.
Mansoor said that most farmers were living below the poverty line in sub-human conditions despite working long hours in the fields. He added that they often incurred heavy loans and had no access to medical facilities or compensation in case of any mishap.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 22nd, 2015.