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Human Rights

“We don’t know what the ‘Right to an Adequate Standard of Living’ is.” Say Labourers

Aurangabad, August 19, 2017: Labourers “today” earn at most eight thousand rupees a month and are still waiting for government to take an action in favour of them. Right to an adequate standard of living is being violated in almost all the parts of the city and no one is ready to take the responsibility for it.

Right to an adequate standard of living is one of the fundamental rights declared by the UN which is right of every human being irrespective of the place, sex, caste, creed and economic background. As a fundamental right no one can snatch it from the person, if he/she is being deprived of it. Adequate standard of living is considered to be fulfilled if the person is having the basic needs on a regular basis and is living his/her life with all the basic requirements along with the needs. Today, this right is being violated in almost each and every part of the city. Labourers especially get affected because of it.

“We didn’t get employment in our state and hence we have migrated here to work as a labourer. We are here since 5 years.” Says a resident of MP who works as a labour at construction sites. Continuing he says, “We don’t usually face the problem of living as we stay at the sites we work, along with our family and we get Rs.3000 per month from which Rs.1500 are spent in to things necessary for day to day life and we are left with Rs.1500 for the rest of the month. We have two choices, either we stay unemployed in our home city or migrate to another city and work as a labourer.” When asked about the right to an adequate standard of living, he was not aware of any right as such and didn’t know what it meant. Unaware of the right, he was happy with his life but is that all?

“I don’t have permanent employment, I work wherever I can. The work status is not stable, me and my father, we both work like this only and make a living.” Says Ajay Jadhav who works as a labour. “I left studying in 5th grade because I was unable to get proper education. I never heard of the right you are talking about and I don’t think its effective for me as knowing it won’t solve my problems. We are living here since 4 years as it was very difficult to make a living in Gangapur village.” Ajay Jadhav today, lives in a house made of bricks which has no base and can get removed at any time in future.

“I am working as a watchman at construction sites since past 2 years and I have three sons. One is at village as to take care of the farm does not profit us, one is working as a labourer and another one usually begs for most of the time for small works.” Says the father of a labourer who have shifted to Aurangabad from a village near to Jalgaon. The situation is all the same since past 2 years and his family comprises of 6 people. “We are poor people, we are poor labourers, if we work today then only we earn something and make a living or else we don’t get to fill our stomach. No one is going to fill our stomach if we sit at home. The place where am working right now has stopped and one of my son goes out to find some work but is unable to get any. Only god knows how we make a living in today’s world.” Continuing he also says, “I get Rs.3000 per month and total earning of my family is Rs.7000. It’s very difficult to make a living out of this and till date no government has done anything for the welfare of people like me. We stay wherever we work and once it’s over we find another place to work as well as live and if we are not able to find one, we go back to our village and try to make a living.” 5 people, 1 family and they don’t have a permanent place to live. One of the live examples of violation of the right to an adequate standard of living.


 “We face the problem of scarcity of  food on a daily basis and there is  nowhere to go for help. Even the  government fails to provide any  relief and we also don’t get any  opportunities to express our  problems in front of the  government. We have paid for ration card in 2015 and we still have all the necessary documents related to it, yet we haven’t got any support from the government.” Says Ibrahim Khan, a labourer who faces food crisis daily. Ibrahim lives on a roadside area in a single room with 4 more people in his family (wife and 3 children), continuing he says, “Also, we are labourers and we have to work on a daily basis for earning money for the basic needs. If we don’t earn enough or at all, we ask for monetary support from different places and make a living, though we have to repay it in the given time period. I don’t know what Right to an Adequate Standard of Living is.” Ibrahim is brought up in Aurangabad itself and complains that he never got an opportunity to improve his standard of living. This is the current scenario of labourers in the city and they have nowhere to go for the relief.

People are dying because of scarcity of food, have no proper place to live in with family, don’t have proper clothes and hygiene and no clean water to drink. Around 30% of the total population today lives below poverty line which clearly indicates that their right to an adequate standard of living is being violated openly in today’s era.

Even if the right of one person is being violated then it is the duty of government to take responsibility and help the person who needs basic requirements to live a standardised life as it is a fundamental right of citizen that is being violated. Yet, government proves to be negligent and inefficient in its duties. Right to an Adequate Standard of Living is a right which cannot be neglected at any cost as it directly relates to the development of nation. This right still remains a distant dream for most of them.


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