The weird letter despatched to the Punjab chief secretary and DGP on March 17, mentioned it had been knowledgeable by BSF that many of the 58 Indian nationals it had apprehended from the border areas of Gurdaspur, Amritsar, Ferozepur and Abohar in 2019-2020, have been discovered to be both mentally challenged or in a feeble way of thinking.
It turned out that they had been working as bonded labourers on the make use of of farmers in border villages of Punjab. These individuals got here from economically weak background and hailed from distant areas of UP and Bihar.
A BSF official informed TOI that the labourers have been apprehended as they have been presumably loitering within the border and couldn’t provide you with a believable rationalization for his or her presence there.
The Punjab authorities and in addition farm unions main the protest in opposition to the Centre’s agri-laws rejected the allegations, terming the MHA letter a “tactic” by the BJP-led Centre to defame Punjab.
“It has been knowledgeable that human trafficking syndicates rent such labourers from their native place to work in Punjab on the promise of excellent wage, however they’re exploited, paid poorly and meted out inhuman therapy. For making them work for lengthy hours in fields, these labourers are sometimes given medicine, which adversely have an effect on their bodily and psychological situation,” the MHA mentioned, including that BSF had been handing the individuals to state police for crucial motion.
Punjab labour minister Balbir Singh Sidhu mentioned, “These actions are being finished by the Centre simply to torpedo farmers’ agitation. They need to spoil Punjab’s relations with Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.”
Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, cooperative and jails minister, mentioned the Centre’s allegations have been an insult to the border farmers who had bravely fought in opposition to Pakistan. The Centre ought to instantly revoke its letter and tender an unconditional apology, he mentioned. Even Sanyukt Kisan Morcha, spearheading the farmers’ stir, claimed it was an try by the Centre to weaken their protest and drive a wedge between farmers and labourers.
The MHA requested the Punjab chief secretary and DGP to take measures to handle the “severe” problem, citing the multi-dimensional downside which includes human trafficking, bonded labour and human rights violations. A duplicate of the letter was additionally forwarded to the Union labour secretary Apurva Chandra.