HYDERABAD - Speakers at a rally of workers and peasants here on Thursday demanded that the provincial government implement the Sindh Industrial Relations Act 2013 in letter and spirit and ensure provision of all legal and constitutional rights to industrial and agriculture workers.

The rally was taken out by the National Trade Union Federation (NTUF) and the Sindh Agriculture General Workers Union from Haider Chowk on Thursday. It concluded in front of Hyderabad Press Club after marching on different roads.

Deputy General Secretary of National Trade Unions Federation Nasir Mansoor and Vice President of the Sindh Agriculture General Workers Union Sabhagi Bheel led the rally. They said the Act that guaranteed social security, pension and other benefits was passed by the Sindh Assembly in 2013, but no step had been taken so far for the betterment of millions of workers and peasants of Sindh by the provincial government, labour department and other departments concerned.

They said that though a labour leader had been appointed provincial labour minister, but no concrete measure for implementation of SIRA 2013 had been seen yet. They said that workers and peasants had been left at the mercy of landlords and industrialists.

They said that agriculture in Sindh was heading towards destruction and peasants were living a miserable life.

They said that peasants were suffering due to inhuman acts of the market mafia, middlemen and traders. They said that growers of various districts of Sindh such as Thatta, Badin, Tando Muhammad Khan, Mirpurkhas, Nawabshah, Matiari, Dadu and Larkana were forced to sell their crops on lower rates.

They demanded that the government implement the Sindh Industrial Relations Act 2013 with immediate effect and give all rights to peasants and workers, set up peasant courts on the pattern of labour courts and take strict action against those selling fake seeds, fertilisers and pesticides. They demanded that the government fix the rice price at Rs1,200 per 40kg and cotton price at Rs4,000 per 40kg. They said that a conference on prices of farm products should be organised and prices should be fixed in consultation with growers’ representatives. They said that growers should be given a special subsidy on electricity, gas, fertilisers and pesticides.

They called for protection of labour rights and sought strict action against those doing injustice to religious minorities and kidnapping and forcibly converting minority girls to Islam.

Mushtaq Ali Shan, Lal Bakhsh Lalan, Zehra Khan, Shakila Khan, Durgiyo Bheel, Fatima Leghari, Badal Sudheer, Gulam Mustafa Mallah, Ghulam Rasool Jalalani, Muhammad Hussain Sario, Pathan Ali Khokhar, Mazhar Ghangro and Muhammad Bakhsh Talpur also addressed the rally.