Mumbai: Workers starve as hotels shut
Bhushan Koyande

Bhiwandi: Bhiwandi is one of India's leading powerloom centre. Thousands of workers from the informal sector work here. However, on the day of Janta Curfew workers of factories and dyeing units found it difficult to get one time food as many small canteens and hotels in the vicinity were shut down.

The "Janta curfew" for long hours from 7 am to 9 pm meant that large numbers of workers from Bhiwandi city and Bhiwandi rural had to starve. On a daily basis the workers rely on small messes, canteens and hotels for their breakfast, lunch and dinner.

"On the day of "Janta Curfew" I was starving till 8 pm as not a single grocery shop and small canteens were open. I only had two packets of biscuits for dinner. I came here for work 4 months back. There is no food at home as my family stays in UP," said Powerloom worker Rajkumar alias Pappu.

"Due to section 144 of CrPc every canteen has shut down. My powerloom owner gave me gas cylinder and utensils to prepare food until March 31. Prior to that I was buying food from canteens. Earlier, I was taking the foods from canteens,” said another poweloom worker Guddu Kumar.

Rais Shaikh, MLA from Bhiwandi East said,"We have discussed the issue with the Bhiwandi DCP. He assured us that parcel service for mess will be made available. Under section 144 of CrPc he indicated that one or two people can go and can take the parcel.”

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