Ensuring workers’ safety and creating a conducive environment at the workplace is vital. However, in Pakistan, there is a lax approach to labour laws. Many of the relevant laws are not enforced or only implemented half-heartedly. The disregard for safety conditions in particular has led to the untimely deaths of hundreds of workers throughout the country. Furthermore, there is an acute shortage of labour inspectors in Pakistan who can carry out daily inspections of factories and other workplaces.
When it comes to pensions and benefits, many of our workers, particularly the lower-income workers, are not even registered with the EOBI. This segment of the labour force often retires with nothing to show for decades of work and falling sick or becoming disabled is akin to a sentence to starvation. It is imperative that we begin applying labour laws and safety rules with no exceptions and ensure that all workers in the country are guaranteed a pension and medical benefits.
Abdul Khalique Panhyar