Saha Commission – Deposition Proper Crèche facilities in mines #CSR #Odisha #Vaw #Womenrights


Deposition before Saha Commission CLAP espouses Creche in Mines.

Ahmadabad: 21.04: The provision of law under Mines Creche Rules 1966 and the Judgement of Odisha High Court in Committee for Legal Aid to Poor and Forum for Creche and Child Care Services (FORCES) vrs. State of Odisha bearing No. WP (C) No. 3132/2003 regarding crèche services for 0-6 age group siblings of working mother deserve priority attention with agenda of CSR by Mining Companies says the petition by Dr. Bikash Das, President, CLAP filed before Saha Commission. It is pertinent to mention that the Saha Commission is presently hearing the CSR of Mining Companies for peripheral development as a part of the overall enquire into irregularities of mining. In course of hearing of the case the lawyer of the petitioner Sidheswar Mohanty brought to the attention of the Commission that crèche facility for young children is a legal obligation, however, it is being overlooked in course of mining operation. Even the Odisha High Court in a public interest petition already directed for appropriate steps to establish crèche in mines. Hearing the contention of the petitioner Justice Saha observed that as per Mines Creche Rules its violation is an offence. Any mining which fail to perform its duty would attract prosecution. Senior Counsel Gopal Subramaniyam also supported the prayer of CLAP for crèche facility and informed the Commission that the submission will be taken care of by mining companies in their CSR Programme. Saha Commission directed the lawyer of CLAP to submit its written deposition before the Commission. BEFORE THE COMMISSION OF ENQUIRY COMPRISING HON’BLE SRI. JUSTICE M.B. SHAH (Retd.), (For illegal mining of Iron Ore and Manganese), Bungalow No. 13, Opp. Anti-Corruption Bureau, Dafnala, Sfahibaug , Ahmedabad – 4 The humble petition filed by Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP), a Registered Society based in Cuttack, Odisha. Sub: Proper enforcement of Crèche facilities for Children of Working Mothers in the mines within state of Odisha as per the provision laid down under Mines Crèche Rules, 1966 (framed by the Central Govt. of India on 1st April, 1966) in exercise of power conferred under Clause (d) and(w) of Section 58 of the Mines Act 1952 and also implementation of order of the Hon’ble High Court of Odisha in a Public Interest Litigation bearing no. WP (C) No. 3132/2003. The following submissions are made for the sympathetic consideration of this Hon’ble Commission in course of hearing the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) of Mining Owners: 1. That provision of crèche facility for children of working mother in mining is a legal obligation of mining owner/miner as per the provision of Mines Crèche Rules, 1966. It is also a statutory obligation of the authorities of mining department to supervise whether the crèche facilities are being provided by the mining owner or not. It is also an entitlement of very young children (up to age of 6 years) who accompany their mother who are working in mines. 2. That, in spite of the provisions of Mines Crèche Rules 1966, the implementation of the provision is grossly manifestly poor as the mining owners are not giving due importance to the issue for various reason including low level of awareness about the provision of law together with lack of assertiveness among working mother about the statutory opportunity for which they are entitled. 3. That deprivation of working women having children below 6-years of age from the entitlement of crèche facility for their children is a common phenomenon all across the mines in Odisha and thereby it is a violation of a statutory obligation by the mining owners. 4. That the public authorities including Labor and Mining Officials appointed for the purpose of ensuring strict compliance of the statutory provisions like crèche facility are not discharging their duty for proper enforcement of the provision of crèche in mines. In fact there is no accountability of officials for strict adherence to the provisions of law. 5. That, to substantiate the rampant violation of the provision relating to crèche facilities, the present petitioner that is CLAP constituted a Fact Finding Mission consisting of Lawyers and Social Activists to investigate into the real state of affair which visited different mines of Sukinda area of Jajpur district of Odisha in the year 2002. After field investigation, the CLAP has published a report with name and style “Undermining Children in Mines” reflecting therein the illegalities and irregularities noticed about the implementation of Crèche facilities in the mines. Such inaction of mine owners is clear violation of rights of children upto age of six years whose mothers are working in respective mines. A Copy of the said report is attached herewith as ANNEXURE -1. 6. That, based on the aforementioned fact finding mission and the fact finding report titled Undermining Children in Mines, CLAP (Committee for Legal Aid to Poor) alongwith FORCES (Forum for Crèche and Child Care Services) approached the Hon’ble High Court of Odisha by way of filing a PIL vide WP (C) No. 3132/2003 seeking direction for enforcement of provisions relating to crèche facility in the mines. 7. That, after careful hearing of allegations leveled and counter affidavit filed by the respective parties, the Hon’ble High Court of Orissa vide order dt. 21.1.2011 passed a verdict with a direction to the OP No. 5 (Ministry of Labour, Union of India, Shrama Shakti Bhawan, New Delhi) to see that the crèches are properly maintained by the mines owners who have established the same as per the Act and Rules. And for those who have not established crèches, Directorate of Mines Safety shall see that the same are established forthwith and safety measures shall be taken for the children of working women in nines area; and further see that the trained teachers are appointed for functioning of Crèches properly. Moreover, periodical inspection shall also be carried out by the Directorate of Mines Safety regarding maintenance and functioning of Crèches in mines areas in consonance of provisions of the Act and Rules in vogue. If the authorities find that any mine owner is contravening the provisions of the Act and Rules they shall have to take steps to prosecute them before the Court of law for contravention of law, which tantamount to statutory offence. A copy of the order of Hon’ble High Court of Orissa dtd. 21.1.2011 is attached herewith as ANNEXURE – 2. 8. That, in spite of all this efforts and the order of the Hon’ble High Court, the deficits, inadequacies, irregularities and latches still persists in respect of enforcement of the provision concerning crèche facilities by the mines owners. The public authorities have not shown due diligence and not taken adequate measures for proper enforcement of crèche rules even though there is a clear direction by the Hon’ble High Court of Orissa made in this regard. 9. That, in the above facts and circumstances the following steps are very much essential for proper enforcement of Crèche Rules in the mines area and to ensure that the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as per the legal provision are effectively implemented for the shake of protection of best interest of the very young children, welfare of the working mother and also for promotion of good governance: ISSUES A. It will be mandatory for every Mines owner to provide Crèche facilities to the children upto age of 6 years of the working women. B. Every Crèche shall have a clean and sanitary latrine and bathroom, adequate safe drinking water, supplementary nutrition, medicines, beds, toys and medical check-up for the children and nursing mothers. C. Periodically visit and monitoring of the crèche facilities should be undertaken by the Directorate of Mines. D. The mines authorities will ensure that the crèche facilities have been strictly implemented by every mines owner. E. In case there is found any latches or negligence to provide crèche facilities, the licence granted to the respective mines is deemed to be cancelled. F. Every mines owner will submit quarterly report to the mines authorities explaining the details and steps taken to implement the crèche facilities for the supervision of the authorities. G. Effective measures should be taken by both the mining department and mines owners for proper implementation of Mines Crèche Rules. 10. That, the petitioner brings the above facts to the notice of the Hon’ble commission for its sympathetic consideration as the Commission rightfully considers a very important aspect of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in course of hearing legal issues pertaining to mining allotment. 11. That, unless a matter like crèche facility for young children below the age group of 6-years of mother working in mines is taken into due consideration at this stage of hearing of the case, the issue of young children would be ignored from the entire process of rendering justice and the best interest of young children will be overlooked. P R A Y E R In the above facts and circumstances along with considering the legal provision of crèches facilities for children in mines, it is humbly prayed to pass appropriate order/recommendation for strict compliance of the legal provision made under Mines Crèches Rules, 1966 as a major aspect of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). And further recommend the issues mentioned in Para – 9 are to be included as part of the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for the best interest of the children. Dr. Bikash Das, President Date: 19.4.13 Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP) And Convenor, Odisha FORCES 367, Markatnagar, Sector – 6, C.D.A, Cuttack – 14, Odisha, India AFFIDAVIT I, Dr. Bikash Das, aged about 43 years, S/o Late Shyam Sundar Das, President of Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP), AT: Plot NO. 367, Markatnagar, Sector – 6, PO: Abhinaba Bidanasi, PS: Markatnagar, Town/Dist.: Cuttack do hereby solemnly affirm and state as follows: 1. That I being president of CLAP presenting this petition before this Hon’ble commission. 2. That the facts stated above are true to the best of my knowledge and belief. Identified by Advocate Deponent Cuttack Date: 19.4.2013 Contact Number of CLAP Advocate Mr. Sidheswar Mohanty: 09861035421

BEFORE THE COMMISSION OF ENQUIRY COMPRISING

HON’BLE SRI. JUSTICE M.B. SHAH (Retd.),

(For illegal mining of Iron Ore and Manganese), Bungalow No. 13,

Opp. Anti-Corruption Bureau, Dafnala, Sfahibaug , Ahmedabad – 4

The humble petition filed by Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP), a Registered Society based in Cuttack, Odisha.

Sub: Proper enforcement of Crèche facilities for Children of Working Mothers in the mines within state of Odisha as per the provision laid down under Mines Crèche Rules, 1966 (framed by the Central Govt. of India on 1st April, 1966) in exercise of power conferred under Clause (d) and(w) of Section 58 of the Mines Act 1952 and also implementation of order of the Hon’ble High Court of Odisha in a Public Interest Litigation bearing no. WP (C) No. 3132/2003.

The following submissions are made for the sympathetic consideration of this Hon’ble Commission in course of hearing the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) of Mining Owners:

1. That provision of crèche facility for children of working mother in mining is a legal obligation of mining owner/miner as per the provision of Mines Crèche Rules, 1966. It is also a statutory obligation of the authorities of mining department to supervise whether the crèche facilities are being provided by the mining owner or not. It is also an entitlement of very young children (up to age of 6 years) who accompany their mother who are working in mines.

2. That, in spite of the provisions of Mines Crèche Rules 1966, the implementation of the provision is grossly manifestly poor as the mining owners are not giving due importance to the issue for various reason including low level of awareness about the provision of law together with lack of assertiveness among working mother about the statutory opportunity for which they are entitled.

3. That deprivation of working women having children below 6-years of age from the entitlement of crèche facility for their children is a common phenomenon all across the mines in Odisha and thereby it is a violation of a statutory obligation by the mining owners.

4. That the public authorities including  Labor and Mining Officials appointed for the purpose of ensuring strict compliance of the statutory provisions like crèche facility  are not discharging their duty for proper enforcement of the provision of crèche in mines. In fact there is no accountability of officials for strict adherence to the provisions of law.

5. That, to substantiate the rampant violation of the provision relating to crèche facilities, the present petitioner that is CLAP constituted a Fact Finding Mission consisting of Lawyers and Social Activists to investigate into the real state of affair which visited different mines of Sukinda area of Jajpur district of Odisha in the year 2002. After field investigation, the CLAP has published a report with name and style “Undermining Children in Mines” reflecting therein the illegalities and irregularities noticed about the implementation of Crèche facilities in the mines. Such inaction of mine owners is clear violation of rights of children upto age of six years whose mothers are working in respective mines.

A Copy of the said report is attached herewith as ANNEXURE -1.

6. That, based on the aforementioned fact finding mission and the fact finding report titled Undermining Children in Mines, CLAP (Committee for Legal Aid to Poor) alongwith FORCES (Forum for Crèche and Child Care Services)  approached the Hon’ble High Court of Odisha by way of filing a PIL vide WP (C) No. 3132/2003 seeking direction for enforcement of provisions relating to crèche facility in the mines.

7. That, after careful hearing of allegations leveled and counter affidavit filed by the respective parties, the Hon’ble High Court of Orissa vide order dt. 21.1.2011 passed a verdict with a direction to the OP No. 5 (Ministry of Labour, Union of India, Shrama Shakti Bhawan, New Delhi) to see that the crèches are properly maintained by the mines owners who have established the same as per the Act and Rules. And for those who have not established crèches, Directorate of Mines Safety shall see that the same are established forthwith and safety measures shall be taken for the children of working women in nines area; and further see that the trained teachers are appointed for functioning of Crèches properly. Moreover, periodical inspection shall also be carried out by the Directorate of Mines Safety regarding maintenance and functioning of Crèches in mines areas in consonance of provisions of the Act and Rules in vogue. If the authorities find that any mine owner is contravening the provisions of the Act and Rules they shall have to take steps to prosecute them before the Court of law for contravention of law, which tantamount to statutory offence.

A copy of the order of Hon’ble High Court of Orissa dtd. 21.1.2011 is attached herewith asANNEXURE – 2.

8. That, in spite of all this efforts and the order of the Hon’ble High Court, the deficits, inadequacies, irregularities and latches still persists in respect of enforcement of the provision concerning crèche facilities by the mines owners. The public authorities have not shown due diligence and not taken adequate measures for proper enforcement of crèche rules even though there is a clear direction by the Hon’ble High Court of Orissa made in this regard.

9. That, in the above facts and circumstances the following steps are very much essential for proper enforcement of Crèche Rules in the mines area and to ensure that the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as per the legal provision are effectively implemented for the shake of protection of best interest of the very young children, welfare of the working mother and also for promotion of good governance:

ISSUES

A. It will be mandatory for every Mines owner to provide Crèche facilities to the children upto age of 6 years of the working women.

B. Every Crèche shall have a clean and sanitary latrine and bathroom, adequate safe drinking water, supplementary nutrition, medicines, beds, toys and medical check-up for the children and nursing mothers.

C. Periodically visit and monitoring of the crèche facilities should be undertaken by the Directorate of Mines.

D. The mines authorities will ensure that the crèche facilities have been strictly implemented by every mines owner.

E. In case there is found any latches or negligence to provide crèche facilities, the licence granted to the respective mines is deemed to be cancelled.

F. Every mines owner will submit quarterly report to the mines authorities explaining the details and steps taken to implement the crèche facilities for the supervision of the authorities.

G. Effective measures should be taken by both the mining department and mines owners for proper implementation of Mines Crèche Rules.

10. That, the petitioner brings the above facts to the notice of the Hon’ble commission for its sympathetic consideration as the Commission rightfully considers a very important aspect of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in course of hearing legal issues pertaining to mining allotment.

11. That, unless a matter like crèche facility for young children below the age group of 6-years of mother working in mines is taken into due consideration at this stage of hearing of the case, the issue of young children would be ignored from the entire process of rendering justice and the best interest of young children will be overlooked.

P R A Y E R

In the above facts and circumstances along with considering the legal provision of crèches facilities for children in mines, it is humbly prayed to pass appropriate order/recommendation for strict compliance of the legal provision made under Mines Crèches Rules, 1966 as a major aspect of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

And further recommend the issues mentioned in Para – 9 are to be included as part of the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for the best interest of the children.

Dr. Bikash Das,

President

Date: 19.4.13   Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP)

And Convenor, Odisha FORCES

367, Markatnagar, Sector – 6, C.D.A,

Cuttack – 14, Odisha, India

AFFIDAVIT

I, Dr. Bikash Das, aged about 43 years, S/o Late Shyam Sundar Das, President of Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP), AT: Plot NO. 367, Markatnagar, Sector – 6, PO: Abhinaba Bidanasi, PS: Markatnagar, Town/Dist.: Cuttack do hereby solemnly affirm and state as follows:

1. That I being president of CLAP presenting this petition before this Hon’ble commission.

2. That the facts stated above are true to the best of my knowledge and belief.

Identified  by

Advocate           Deponent

Cuttack

Date: 19.4.2013

 

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  1. Trackback: Supreme Court of India directs registration of over 75,000 cases of missing children | kracktivist

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