ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles by Sharit K BhowmikSubscribe to Sharit K Bhowmik

Living Conditions of Tea Plantation Workers

The strike by women workers in the tea plantations of Kerala brings to fore the miserable living conditions of the workers in this sector across the country. With more than a million permanent workers, the tea plantation industry is the largest in the formal private sector in the country. Yet wages of these workers are the lowest in the formal sector and their living conditions are appalling. Though there are laws that govern the living conditions of workers, these are violated and the state seems indifferent.

Protecting Employers against Workers and Trade Unions

As part of its attempt to improve growth, the government has put forth the Labour Code on Industrial Relations Bill, which amalgamates the provisions of the Industrial Disputes Act and the Trade Union Act. In spite of some positive features, the bill's aversion to the rights of workers and trade unions is quite apparent. For instance, penalties are imposed on individual workers for illegal strikes, but for illegal lockouts, the fine is borne by a collective entity; this is but one of many unequal provisions.

Wages of Tea Plantation Workers

After prolonged tripartite wage negotiations, tea plantation workers of West Bengal fi nally reached a wage agreement last February. However, the wages in the new agreement continue to be below statutory minimum levels and are almost half the wages that plantation workers receive in Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Plantations in West Bengal and Assam continue to prosper even as they deny workers humane conditions of work that are mandated by the Plantations Labour Act 1951.

Adivasi Women Workers in Tea Plantations

Witches, Tea Plantations, and Lives of Migrant Laborers in India: Tempest in a Tea Pot by Soma Chaudhuri (New Delhi: Foundation Books), 2014; pp xiii + 193, Rs 695.

Dignifying Discontent of Informal Labour

Informal Labour, Formal Politics, and Dignified Discontent in India by Rina Agarwala (New York: Cambridge University Press), 2013; pp 264, price not indicated.

Making of a City

Opium City: Making of Early Victorian Bombay by Amar Farooqui; Three Essays Collective, Delhi, 2006;
SHARIT K BHOWMIK The city of Bombay (now Mumbai) is regarded as the first city of the country. Though at present, the services sector is the main source of employment, till a few decades ago Bombay was known as an industrial city. Most people believed that the textile industry was the mainstay of the city since 1850s. In fact, the census commissioner of the 1931 Census had stated

Tea Plantation Workers` Strike

Workers in West Bengal?s tea plantations recently struck work on the issue of a wage hike. Employers, for their part, believe that wages in the industry are already high and productivity low; any increase in wages thus would increase production costs. However, certain studies reveal that it is the neglect of tea plantations and higher management salaries that have made production expensive.

Street Vendors in Asia: A Review

This paper attempts to examine recent research done on street vendors in Asia with the aim of assessing the magnitude of street vending in different countries and the composition of the vendors. Further, it collates information on the extent of unionisation of the vendors and other organisations, such as non-government organisations (NGOs), self-help organisations (SHOs), advocacy groups, etc, that work for their welfare.

National Policy for Street Vendors

Street vendors across several Indian cities have generally been regarded as nuisance value, their presence seen as inimical to urban development. However, the range of goods and services they provide renders them useful to other sections of the urban poor and thus they form an important segment of the informal economy. A draft national policy on street vendors argues that needs of this section are vital for urban planning purposes. Regulation of vendors and hawking zones and granting vendors a voice in civic administration need to become definitive elements of urban development policy.

Coping with Urban Poverty

This paper tries to examine the socio-economic adjustments of families that have undergone decline in living standards within a brief period of time. The main earners in these families were once employed in the textile mills where most often, employment was regular and permanent with some degree of social security. These people have lost their jobs and all the other facilities which they were entitled to, becoming a part of the urban poor which draws its sustenance through employment in the informal/unorganised sector. How have they adjusted to their new economic status and what are the social institutions through which they are able to survive?

Trade Unions and Women Workers in Tea Plantations

in Tea Plantations Kanchan Sarkar Sharit K Bhowmik Despite forming half the labour force in planations, women workers have remained marginalised in trade unions of plantation workers, A study of three tea plantations in the Dooars and Terai areas of north Bengal.

Participation and Control-Study of a Co-operative Tea Factory in the Nilgiris

Co-operative organisations can best protect and promote the interests of the weaker sections of society when they are truly democratic. However the autonomy of co-operatives is often undermined by state governments. The major toot of government dominance is co-operative legislation. A case study of a co-operative tea factory in the Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu details the bureaucratisation of a co-operative.


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