Many women without jobs after the closure of plastic units

Though the residents of Shastripuram and its surroundings are yet to receive the benefits of closure of plastic units in their area, the move has definitely hit hard many economically. Particularly scores of women employed in these units are rendered jobless.

The authorities had closed down many plastic units here in the last two months after complaints of pollution from the residents around. A few premises were also demolished to stop the owners from resuming the activity.

Though the local people welcomed the action of the authorities, scores of women employed in these units have landed in penury due to sudden loss of employment.

They used to earn between Rs.100 and Rs.120-a-day for the hazardous work of sorting out plastic material and bags from dumps of material sourced here.

Fatima Bee, 50, who worked for about 12 years in one of the scrap sorting units, is now forced to stay back at home after the unit was closed down.

“The owner told us to look for some other work. He assured to call us back once alternate land is found to set up the plastic unit. But I am unsure about it” says the widow from Hassannagar.

Most of them see a bleak future ahead. “Who will employ us now? Officials should think of some alternative source of employment for us,” says Rasheeda Bee (47), who used to earn about Rs.700 a week.

The beginning of the new month has further increased her worries, “I fear the house owner may ask me to vacate the house for I have not paid the rent for last two months,” she sobs.

Mounting debts are another major worry for a few families. “Considering our plight people are lending us money but I am worried about repaying it. Moreover, I have to marry off my two daughters,” says Meher (45). Her husband is ill for the last one year and stays at home.

A few women got employed in other companies, but the employers are paying them low wages taking advantage of their plight.

“I am paid only Rs.80 as against Rs.120 earlier,” says Naseem Sultana, who has four children to look after.

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