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March 31, 2020

State has no data of workers: Mazdoor leaders

National

March 31, 2020

LAHORE: Neither the state nor non-state institutions have data of how many workers have been effected in the formal or informal sector.

These views were expressed by leaders of Pakistan Mazdoor Mahaz and Muttahida Labor Federation including Shaukat Chaudhry, M. Yaqub, Hanif Ramay, M Akbar, Fazle Wahid, Nazir Shahzad and Ch. M. Ashraf. In a statement, they stated that it was sad that no institution in the country had the data for formal or informal workers. “Thus, how will the government provide ration to the unemployed workers. When we mention a state employee or someone in the private sector, they often refer to registered workers in Social Security and EOBI. But in reality, more than 60% of the workers aren’t even registered, as these institutions have failed to register workers,” they added.

They said the labour department had failed in its responsibility as it did not keep the record of workers in different sectors. “Thus, in these critical times, no one has the record of the exact number of workers who have become unemployed. We only wish that the rulers had instituted a local government system which would have kept record at the union council level. How will the data be collected now and how long will it take, is anyone’s guess,” they added. They suggested that despite the challenges, there was only one possible way forward if the government was serious about providing relief to the effected workers.

“The government should create monitoring committees at the union council level, and include leaders of registered labour federations to ensure that the genuinely affected workers are provided with relief transparently and effectively,” they suggested.