Updated: April 30, 2021 7:07:37 am
The Karnataka government has allowed garment units in the state to operate with 50 per cent of their workforce during the ongoing 14-day lockdown till May 12. The order, which was issued by the Revenue Secretary N Manjunatha Prasad, however, stressed that the workforce should strictly adhere to Covid-appropriate behvaiour.
“The movement of staff shall be allowed by producing vail ID/authorisation issued by concerned industries/industrial establishment,” Prasad clarified.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Garments and Textile Workers Union (GATWU) had written to Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa questioning why the garment industry was not exempted from the lockdown orders while agriculture, and construction activities were permitted. GATWU had also demanded the government to either allow 50 per cent operations or to provide them with compensation.
Meanwhile, the Karnataka Employers’ Association (KEA) had also echoed the same demand. “A total closure (of garment factories) can lead to people returning to their hometowns and them not returning for some time. This will put the industry in further trouble,” KEA President B C Prabhakar said.
Prabhakar added that foreign buyers might divert orders to countries like Bangladesh resulting in huge losses.
Earlier this year, a survey conducted by GATWU and Alternative Law Forum (ALF) in 25 garment factories in and around Bengaluru had found that an estimated “50 to 62 per cent of the workforce” were forced to quit in 2020, affected by the coronavirus-induced lockdown last year.
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