In the august company of teachers and doctors

The section of the land’s population, fortunate to be engaged on white-collar jobs, doesn’t seem to realise the plight of the aforementioned workforce bugged by serious threat to their health, short span of work life, low wages, lack of education and living in insanitary environs. Although governments are expected to comply with worker-friendly laws through their department of labour, the extent to which the functionaries in administration have failed in their duty is common knowledge.

The script of the land’s historians telling us about life of people in the past, at best, throws light on what has happened, leaving the question of why grossly unanswered. This feature prompts one to turn attention to a currently important topic of toilets. Given the fact that our ancestors didn’t build toilets, can anybody answer why they chose open defecation?

While both the Central Government and many State Governments are blaring statements in the media with targets of building residential dwellings as well as toilets both in urban spaces and villages, followed by figures reflecting achievement of the task, investors of all hues, popularly known as developers have got into overdrive raising multi-storeyed structures in cities across the country, virtually changing their skyline, much to the dislike of the ageing citizens who have spent major part of their life in single-storeyed dwellings. Amidst the glitz and glamour marking the aggressive promotion of high rise structures by the developers, the construction workers continue to remain invisible.

The nation’s Apex Court has lamented that millions of construction workers, mostly women and children, are being denied the benefits of welfare with 28,500 crore rupees collected for their cause but not utilised. The time-honoured Sanskrit quote that doctors and teachers are not necessary after their service puts in their august company India’s estimated five crore building construction workforce.

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