Even as the nationwide lockdown continues, labourers employed at brick kilns are back at work after permission for the resumption of operations.
Work has resumed after orders from the Centre and the state government. The Moradabad administration allowed work to resume at brick kilns. About 100 brick kilns in the Pak Bada police station area of Moradabad are back to work.
"I am very happy with the start of work. Now can now earn a livelihood. Earlier there was a lot of trouble as work had completely stopped. We get a daily wage of Rs 425," Jamaal, a labourer said while speaking to ANI.
Many were not keen on returning home amid lockdown. Jamaal said that he does want to go back home but wants to work and earn. "I do want to go back home now that work has finally resumed. I want to work and earn a living presently," he said.
Another worker echoing similar sentiment said: "We did face problems but our employer ensured that we were not in grave trouble. Earlier, I did want to go back home but now, I want to work."
Om Pal Singh, the contractor, said that ever since the lockdown has been in place, there have been problems faced by the labourers and contractors. "With the lockdown in place, work had come to a standstill leading to immense problems. We were able to provide money to the labourers," said the contractor.
"The labourers wanted to go back home but they were unable to go as there were no transportation facilities available. All the labourers staying here belong from other states," he added.
The countrywide lockdown to curb COVID-19, which was scheduled to end on May 3, was extended by another two weeks till May 17.