Is there a new normal for contract workmen post COVID 19?

Is there a new normal for contract workmen post COVID 19?
It is difficult to regulate it. Management can be privy to such exchange through their trusted workmen but cannot initiate corrections or clarification. As a response strategy, it would be advisable for a Group Manager to create a legitimate message group where s/he can offer official version and explanation.

COVID 19 brought forth an ugly side of the Indian corporates, more specifically the manufacturing sector. The sight of contract workmen desperately gathering at railway stations and thereafter, trudging their way on foot to their native place with their spouses and small kids was heart-wrenching. Some unlucky ones could not make it home as they were crushed under a vehicle or died of exhaustion.

Was it sufficient for all of us to recognise our moment of lie? Perhaps not. All of us, the corporate leadership which normally feigns ignorance about these labour practices at such moments; the HR, which must have frantically set its machinery in action to examine the legal loopholes to escape any liability; the government machinery which would have smelled an opportunity to make some quick and big bucks and contractors, who always try to squeeze more and more from their contracts; failed the contract workmen and their families.

In last two decades or so, the deployment of contract...

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Prashant Ahir

HR/IR consultant, Pune

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