Tamil Nadu

Spot, speak and stop to eradicate bonded labour: HC judge

‘The one stop crisis teams across Tamil Nadu have rescued 122 victims of human trafficking in six months’

To tackle the prevalence of bonded labour, we need to spot it, speak about it and work towards stopping it, said Justice Vineet Kothari, executive chairman, State Legal Services Authority and Judge, High Court of Madras.

Speaking at the commemoration ceremony of the enactment of the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act organised by the International Justice Mission (IJM) and British Deputy High Commission, Chennai, he said, “Awareness should be constantly created to ensure that people are able to spot bonded labour when it is happening and speak about the rights of the persons who are trapped in it.”

“If we are not a part of the solution, we are a part of the problem. The wide gap between the haves and the have-nots is not desirable in a democracy like ours and organisations such as the IJM should continue to work towards bridging this gap to help eradicate bonded labour,” he said.

Within a period of six months, the one stop crisis teams across Tamil Nadu have rescued 122 victims of human trafficking.The highest number of victims rescued were 68 persons from Chennai followed by 28 persons rescued in Chengalpettu and 15 persons in Vellore.

“For Tamil Nadu to become completely bonded-labour free, stakeholders need to work in tandem with each other and the one stop crisis teams established under the TN State legal services authority has been playing an important part in the same ,” Justice Dr Kothari said.

The crisis team’s preventive strategies include creating awareness about the law and the dangers posed by prospective traffickers. They also map out vulnerable areas, inspect work sites periodically and ensure that government and rehabilitation schemes reach the victims.

Oliver Ballhatchet MBE, British Deputy High Commissioner, in his keynote address said that the important task ahead is to continue working closely to the cause to prevent survivors from becoming victims again and to ensure offenders do not become perpetrators again.

As a part of the commemoration, a booklet on the one stop crisis teams and their work in rescuing victims across the district was released.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 9:29:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/spot-speak-and-stop-to-eradicate-bonded-labour-hc-judge/article30782345.ece

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