83% auto-sector machines have no safety sensor: Report

The report, released at the campus on Wednesday, has analysed 1,369 auto-sector injured workers, based in Gurugram, Haryana, in nearly past four years. (DH File Photo)

A report prepared by an NGO founded by three alumni of India’s premier management school-the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, has revealed a grim picture of workers employed in factories which supply components to major automakers in the country.

The report, released at the campus on Wednesday, has analysed 1,369 auto-sector injured workers, based in Gurugram, Haryana, in nearly past four years, out of them 93 per cent were working in factories that work as ancillary units to auto giants.  

The report has found that “83 per cent of machines of auto-sector industries had no safety sensor” and 61 per cent of workers lost their hands and fingers in accidents. It says that “48 per cent of workers felt excessive production pressure from supervisors…” The report has found 65 per cent victims were below 30 years of age who were all contract workers. It says that “47 per cent lacked or had poor quality of safety gear”

The report entitled “Crushed” has been prepared by Safe In India Foundation (SII), an NGO started by three alumni of IIMA. 

The report is based on experience of 1,369 injured workers, all of whom are said to have been assisted by SII in obtaining their Employee State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) healthcare and compensations. The reports states that the NGO operates only in Gurgaon or Gurugram as of now but “these findings are reflective of a national challenge for a number of reasons.”

“Many of these cases are due to illegal practices under Indian Factory Law. Sadly, more than 6 in 10 of these injuries resulted in permanent incapacity, rendering such workers incapable of equivalent employment and future growth, driving their families into vicious cycle of poverty,” the report has stated.

At the launch, IIMA’s director Errol D’Souza said that “This report, the first of its kind, has focused on the safety record of the automotive industry’s supply chain in India. By all accounts, this sector is critical to the country’s growth - contributing to around 4 per cent of its GDP and employing over 13 million people.”

The report also carries a message from Minister of State Labour and Employment Santosh Kumar Gangwar who said that "The challenges faced by the industry are well understood and we need to help them too to improve safety aspects in their factories." At the launch, the union minister also participated during a panel discussion through video conferencing. 

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