Several labour associations locked up the office of the Divisional Labour Commissioner in Nabarangpur on Monday protesting the long absence of the district labour officer (DLO). Many officials reportedly remained inside the office for several hours during the protest. The officials were reportedly confined to the office til 8.30 pm.
As per reports, district labour officer, Ranjan Kumar Behera was earlier caught by Vigilance officials on the charges of receiving bribe. It was alleged that the DLO is reportedly playing truant as a result of which various official works like new registration of labourers, renewal of registration and disbursal of various financial assistance to labourers have been affected.
As many as 25 labour associations expressed their resentment over such disruption in official work.
Bipin Nag, secretary of the Masons’ Association in Nabarangpur said, “We locked the Labour Commission office. The DLO post has been lying vacant for the last three months. It has not been filled up. Various official works have been hampered. Labour registrations are not being renewed and people are deprived of their benefits pertaining to deaths, marriages, education and maternity.”
Divisional Labour Commissioner, Kuber Behera said that since November, the DLO has been on continuous leave, various works like labour registration, renewal, and labour card issuances have stopped. “I have intimated the government about the disruption due to the long absence of the DLO. The Collector has been apprised of the issue. The government is expected to fill up the post,” he said.
Later in the day, the labourers withdrew their protests following an assurance from the Divisional Labour Commissioner.