US trade body to help combat silicosis among gem workers

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Surat: Thousands of agate stone cutters and polishers in Khambhat and nearby areas will be covered under the project taken up by the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) to combat the rise of silicosis, the debilitating and fatal disease that results from inhalation of silica dust released during cutting of gems.

The AGTA has secured initial funding and a pilot project is planned for select facilities in India, including Jaipur and Khambhat.

"Workplace silicosis is not unique to the jewellery industry," said AGTA CEO Douglas Hucker in a statement to JCK magazine. Read more

Courtesy: The Times of India

India's mining state steps up fight to rein in killer silicosis

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JAIPUR: On the road to Budhpura village in district Bundi district rise small hills. A closer inspection reveals these 'hills' are loose rubble piled up from decades of quarrying. At the mines here, the air is heavy with silica dust as men, women, children chip away at the slabs of stone. Bundi, along with Kota, accounts for 10 per cent of Rajasthan's sandstone production. 

Bhajan Lal used to work at one of these mines till a few years ago. In May this year the 35-year-old succumbed to silicosis, a deadly lung disease that is untreatable yet easily preventable. Mining workers contract the disease when exposed to silica -loose fine dust released when sandstone, granite or quartz are drilled out of the earth. Miners exposed to dust for about 10 years are vulnerable. It is worse for those who work on quartz; it takes as little as five years of exposure for silicosis to set in. Particles enter the lungs, gradually reducing lung function. There is no cure. Read more

Courtesy: The Economic Times

Other states to adopt Raj model on silicosis

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Jaipur: The Rajasthan State Human Rights Commission's (RSHRC) pioneering efforts to provide solace to silicosis victims in state have garnered appreciation at the national level. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has accepted it as a model programme in silicosis prevention and management for other states. Silicosis is an incurable occupational lung disease caused by inhalation of dust containing free crystalline silica. A large number of workers engaged in mining, construction, gem cutting and polishing, ceramics, slate/pencil, glass manufacture are at the risk of developing the disease.

The issue caught the attention of government after RSHRC took suo motu cognizance of the problem of silicosis in 2012 and found that in Rajasthan the problem was much more serious than anticipated. Read more

Courtesy: The Times of India

‘589 MP workers died of silicosis in Gujarat’

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As many as 589 labourers, mostly tribals from western Madhya Pradesh, died due to silicosis in last 10 years while working for the quartz crushing factories in Gujarat, according to a study.

The deceased were among 1,721 people from 743 families hailing from tribal-dominated Dhar, Jhabua and Alirajpur districts who had migrated to Gujarat, claims the study carried out by three NGOs including ‘Silicosis Peedit Sangh’ (SPS), between October 2015 and March 2016.

Silicosis is a lung disease caused by breathing in tiny bits of silica, a mineral that is part of sand, rock, and mineral ores such as quartz. Read more

Courtesy: The Hindu

सिलिकोसिस से मौत पर मानवाधिकार आयोग से गुहार

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जिले में सिलिकोसिस बीमारी से लगातार हो रही मौत और प्रशासनिक लापरवाही के विरोध में मानवाधिकार आयोग का दरवाजा खट-खटाया गया है।

रायगढ़ जिले में सिलिकोसिस बीमारी से लगातार हो रही मौत और प्रशासनिक लापरवाही के विरोध में मानवाधिकार आयोग का दरवाजा खट-खटाया गया है। मानवाधिकार आयोग में इस मामले की शिकायत करने के बाद हस्तक्षेप करने और पीडि़त परिवार को न्याय दिलाने की मांग की गई है। सामाजिक संगठन जनचेतना की ओर से मानवाधिकार आयोग दिल्ली को भेजी गई शिकायत में कहा गया है कि जिले में सिलिकोसिस का कहर बरप रहा है और जिला प्रशासन व स्वास्थ्य विभाग की ओर इसके पीडि़तों को टीबी की दवाई खिलाई जा रही है।

जब मामला उठा और सिलिकोसिस की पहचान हुई, इसके बाद भी इन पीडि़तों की मदद नहीं की जा रही है। ये सभी प्रभावित जिले में चल रहे पत्थर पिसाई उद्योग से संबंधित हैं। जहां ये लोग कार्य करते थे, या फिर ऐसे लोग हैं जो उस लोकेलिटी में निवास करते हैं जहां ये उद्योग संचालित होते हैं। आयोग से की गई शिकायत में इस बात का भी उल्लेख किया गया है कि सिलिकोसिस से अब तक दर्जन भर लोगों की मौत हो चुकी है पर प्रशासन और स्वास्थ्य विभाग इस मामले में खामोशी बरते हुए है। ऐसे में मनवाधिकार आयोग से इस बात की गुहार लगाई गई है कि पीडि़तों की मदद की जाए और इस लापरवाही के पीछे के दोषियों के खिलाफ कार्रवाई की जाए। विस्तार से पढ़ें

सौजन्य से: पत्रिका