Thanjavur: Revenue officials released 50 persons belonging to 33 families who were working as bonded labourers in brick kilns at Devankudi village near Kabisthalam in Papanasam taluk, on Thursday.
On receiving information from the Society for Health Extension and Development (SHED) India, a non-governmental organisation, Revenue Divisional Officer of Kumbakonam, Veerasamy, and tahsildar (Papanasam), Kannan, revenue inspector Manjula and village administrative officer (VAO) Balasubramanian, visited the village, and secured the release of the 50 persons working as bonded labourers.
They released 27 persons including 24 adults and three children from 11 families, working in the kiln of one Sekar, 18 adults and three children belonging to eight families from the kiln of Raju, and two persons of a family from the kiln of Mani.
Mrs. Sumathi (30), wife of Maduraiveeran and a resident of Arunkal Papankulam in Ariyalur, who was among the one who were released, said that harassment was the only thing they faced in the brick kiln.
“My husband is a diabetic. He was not allowed to take treatment, as leave was not given. I was not able to attend my brother's marriage. We borrowed `50,000, but kiln owners wrote some amount according to their decision in their records, and asked our family members to work,” she said. Inquiries by officials revealed that many of them had been working between 10 to 15 years.
The labourers were brought to Papanasam taluk office, given release certificates and sent to their respective villages. They belonged to both Thanjavur and Ariyalur.
Owners of the kilns were not present when revenue officials went to their places. Kabisthalam police registered a case and are investigating....