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Miseries of brick-kiln labourers 

26 Desember 2010 06:51:21

Miseries of brick-kiln labourers

Sohail Rashid

Anwar Ali, working at a brick-kiln near Koral Chowk for 20 long years, has no money to buy a course-book for his son.

His son, Adeel, is a student of class four in a government school. When INFN visited the brick-kiln, he was demanding a textbook of Urdu which he needs in school, while Anwar Ali was trying to convince him that he has no money for it.

Anwar Ali belongs to Sargodha but living near Koral Chowk in Rawalpindi in an ordinary house provided to him by brick-kiln owners. He has two sons and a daughter. He and his wife work the whole day to make both ends meet, but still they are living a life of misery.

Talking to INFN, Anwar Ali said that he wants to see his son educated. For this reason, he had let his son go to school, but now he has no means to even have two-time meal for his family. “I think my son will have a better future by getting education, but now it is becoming difficult for me to bear his education expenses,” he added.

“I am paid on the basis of my work. I am getting only Rs350 daily for preparing 1,000 bricks, while the same quantity of bricks is being sold for Rs10,000,” Anwar Ali said. “Every Friday, brick-kiln owners pay me Rs5,000. Out of which, they cut Rs2,500 as rent of the house I live in. I am left with an amount of only Rs2,500, which is insufficient for the needs of my family,” he stated. “I haven’t seen any government official or any other authoritative person here during the last 20 years, except for NGO workers who come here to make our videos and photographs. I don’t know for what purpose they make our videos and photographs as they never helped us,” he told INFN.

Anwar Ali’s wife was preparing mud for bricks at a distance. She said that their life becomes paralysed whenever it rains and they have to borrow money from others to meet their daily requirements. “Currently, we owe Rs100,000” she said. “My first and last wish is to see my sons with a bright future. For this reason, I am doing hard work,” she said with a twinkle in her eyes.