Mines Close: Starving Workers Protest

Hundreds of unemployed mine labourers from Zawar Mines area have laid their demands and expressed their agitation towards the mining company for sacking their jobs without any prior notice. The labourers handed over a memorandum to District Collector in the name of President of India and also requested to take decision in their favour. The workers were demanding to re-start mining work in 4 mines located in Zawar Mines, 40 kms from Udaipur which have been closed from last 18 months. Jawarmala, Baroi, Mochia and West Mochia are producing zinc from last 50 years; these mines are considered to be the main source of income for more than 3000 families who are directly depended on it whereas nearly 30,000 people from the area have also been affected due to the closure of these mines. Since the privatisation of Hindustan Zinc, Vedanta Group has taken over the mines of this tribal area. As mentioned in the copy of memorandum, on March 29, 2010 mining authority had closed their four mines and dismissed hundreds and thousands of mine workers from job without any prior notice which affected many families to die of starvation. At present the company has 1100 permanent labourers, 200 office employees and 3000 contract labourers. After closing four mines, all 3000 contract labourers became jobless. Today, the workers protested outside District Collector’s office and demanded to re-open all four closed mines, reimbursement to contract labourers in case of mine shutdown, contract workers should be given same payment like permanent workers, government should take care of employment of people residing near Zawar Mines and company should give one third of the profit share to labourers. We could not contact any government authorities or officials from Vedanta to comment on the issue.

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