Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik launched distribution of bicycles free of cost among construction workers on the occasion International Labour Day on Wednesday.
Mr. Patnaik, addressing a function organised by the State Labour Department and State Building and Construction Workers’ Association, said workers and farmers play a key role in nation building and government was giving special attention to their welfare.
Under the new initiative taken through the State Building and Other Construction Workers’ Welfare Board, Mr. Patnaik said the eligible registered construction workers would get free bicycles, which would lessen their burden for travelling to worksites.
In the first phase, about 60,000 construction workers are likely to be benefited by the scheme. Distribution of free bicycles would be taken up on a bigger scale from Thursday.
He said construction workers would be provided free gloves, helmet, and shoes for ensuring their safety at workplaces.
The Chief Minister announced construction of 50 temporary shelters for construction workers during the financial year of 2013-14.
The State government doubled the compensation amount from Rs. 75,000 to Rs. 1.5 lakh in case of becoming disable in accidents. The assistance during the time of natural deaths was raised from Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 1 lakh. Mr. Patnaik emphasised on the need for making benefits available to construction workers in time.
Among others, State Labour Minister Bijoyshree Routray and State Building and Other Construction Workers’ Welfare Board president Jogendra Tripathy spoke on the occasion.