Amazon's Manesar Warehouse Under NHRC Probe for Alleged Labor Rights Abuse

The commission has sent a request for a thorough report on the subject to the Secretary of the Union Ministry of Labor and Employment, requesting it within a week.
Amazon
Amazon

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) of India has taken suo motu cognizance of a media report detailing an incident at Amazon's warehouse in Manesar, Haryana. According to the report by the Indian Express, a 24-year-old worker was required to pledge that they would not take toilet or water breaks until unloading packages from six 24-foot-long trucks was completed. 

Read: Amazon Faces Scrutiny Over Alleged Labor Law Breaches Amid Heatwave Conditions: Report

In a statement, the commission mentioned, “The Commission has observed that the contents of the news report, if true, raise a serious issue of the human rights of the workers in violation of the labor laws and the guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Labour and Employment from time to time.” 

Following this, the commission has sent a request for a thorough report on the subject to the Secretary of the Union Ministry of Labor and Employment, requesting it within a week. A statement released by the commission further adds, “A woman worker also claimed that she keeps standing for nine hours daily and is required to evaluate 60 small products or 40 medium-sized products per hour during duty.” 

Additionally, the factories and warehouses in Haryana reportedly help cut costs for Amazon. This is because the minimum wage in Haryana is Rs 11,000–13,000 as compared to Rs 21,000–23,000 in Delhi. 

In the past as well, Amazon has been accused of labor rights violations. Speaking to Outlook India, a worker at the Amazon warehouse DEL 4 in Manesar, Gurgaon, said that they are tracked continuously. He added, “If we take a break during work to use the toilet, the managers come after us and tell us that we can go to the bathroom only during the bathroom break... that if we want to go to the bathroom so badly, we can quit and go home." 

However, Amazon has claimed that the safety and well-being of the workers is a top priority for them. Speaking to Outlook India, an Amazon spokesperson said, “If we do find increasing heat or humidity inside our buildings, then our teams take action to provide comfortable working conditions, including temporarily suspending work. We have cooling measures in all our buildings, including ventilation systems, fans, and spot coolers.” 

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