The price of refusing work – a hand

man with chopped off hand in hospital

A horrifying story has come out of rural Orissa where two labourers, Nilambar Dhangada Majhi and Pialu Dhangada Majhi from Nuaguda village are admitted in a serious condition at the Bhawanipatna district headquarters hospital after having their hands chopped off by a middleman contractor when they refused to go out of state to work in Chattisgarh.

man with bandaged stump of chopped off hand
photo courtesy Odisha Sun Times

This incident occurred in Kalahandi District of Orissa. A labour contractor from Sinapali, Nuapada district chopped-off hands of 2 laborers, Nilambar and Pialu Majhi from Nuagaon village in Jaypatna block when they refused to go to Chattisgarh for working as bonded labor in brick kilns.

Around 12 individuals were hired by a contractor to work in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh. The families of these individuals were paid 10,000 rupees each on the understanding that they would work as migrant labour in Andhra Pradesh after harvesting the paddy crops. However, the labour contractor forcibly took away 12 people from the village in a Bolero jeep on Sunday before the harvest was completed.

Instead of taking the labourers to AP, the contractor was trying to take them to Chattisgarh. The labourers refused to go to Chattisgarh and 10 labourers escaped from the vehicles that was transporting them to Chattisgarh. Out of these 10 individuals, 2 were caught by the contractors and their right hands were chopped off as a punishment saying “If you are not going to work for us, you will not be able to work for anybody”.

The labourers from Nuaguda village had taken an advance of Rs 10, 000 to Rs 15, 000 each from the labour contractor with a promise that they shall go to Andhra Pradesh as migrant labourers after harvesting their paddy crop. However, the labour contractor forcibly took away 12 people from the village in a Bolero jeep on Sunday before the harvest.

man with chopped off hand in hospital
photo courtesy Oridha Sun Times

The injured labourers are admitted in Bhawanipatna government hospital as of now and police is yet to arrest the contractor who perpetrated this heinous crime, who is reputed to be locally powerful. There has been no FIR filed and the only record of the incident is a note in the police diary so far.

Here is how you can help. Spread the word to bring this incident to the notice of media. Call up top officials in the Kalahandi district to stress the importance of prompt and efficient investigation and arrest of the perpetrators.

Top officials of Kalahandi District:

 1. Mr Sharthak – SP of Bhawanipatna – 09439 801 100
2. Mr Satyananda – Town Incharge, Bhawanipatna Police Station – 09438 260 596
3. Dr Bijay Ketan Upadhyaya – Collector Kalahandi – 07894 857 455
The only coverage of this incident so far appears to be in the Odisha Sun Times and on CGNetSwara
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