Says influx of migrants putting pressure on urban governance and civic amenities
“Population projections should include migrants”
“Human rights violations under contract labour”
KOCHI: The large influx of migrants from different parts of the country with different linguistic and cultural backgrounds was putting pressure on governance and civic amenities, according to a study.
The study conducted by the Centre for Socio Economic and Environmental studies, a Kochi-based NGO, among casual labourers from Tamil Nadu suggested that alternative population projections that include migrants have to be made for integrating the issues relating to migration into local governance.
The volume and diversity of the migrant population should be taken into account in urban planning and implementation of programmes like the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission and the Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project.
The study was conducted by N. Ajith Kumar and K.S. Surabhi of the Centre.
The issues of public health, sanitation, water supply, housing, urban environment, educational and infrastructural needs, and law and order need greater attention at the level of policy planning and implementation. Nearly 60 per cent of the migrants in Ernakulum district came from the neighbouring state of Tamil Nadu; and the remaining were mostly from Maharashtra and Karnataka.
Vathuruthy, Kadavanthra junction, Kaloor junction, market junction on Banerjee Road, Edappally, and Thrikakkara were the hubs where this workforce waited for their turn.
While the male migrants were paid an average of Rs.226 per day, for a female worker it was just Rs.196. On an average, the earnings of migrant workers were three times their earnings in Tamil Nadu, the study said.
Many human rights violations were reportedly happening under contract work, particularly those employing unskilled migrant workers from the north and the eastern parts of the country, the study said.
It was found that most of the migrant workers were using water from public taps for drinking and other purposes. One major problem identified by the study was the dumping of domestic waste by the labourers in public places. This practice has serious implications on urban environment and public health, the study said.
The public health system remained largely ignorant about the serious implications of not addressing the health issues of the migrant population. In the absence of proper medical attention, there existed the possibility of these workers acting as carriers of communicable diseases like chikungunya and dengue fever from and to their native places.