By Anuradha Nagaraj CHENNAI, India (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - An investigation into the death of a teenage girl working in a spinning mill in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu has raised fresh concerns over the working conditions of textile workers, especially those trapped in bonded labor. The 17-year-old girl, the daughter of farm workers, was found unconscious in her room in the Ganapathy Spinning Mills compound in Vellakoil in Tirupur district, on March 10 after failing to show up for a regular overtime shift. The cause of her death remains unknown, pending results of a post mortem investigation. However, police said they had arrested a co-worker on charges of abetment to suicide. Civil society groups are calling for a full investigation into the case, saying cases of suicides related to sexual abuse and labor exploitation in India's booming textile industry go largely unreported. A report into the girl's death by the Tamil Nadu Textile and Common Labour Union, a women-led trade union set up to represent women in the textile industry, said there were "wound marks on her body and rope impression around her neck". Repeated attempts to reach the management at the mill were unsuccessful. The teenager had worked in the textile industry - the second largest employer in India after agriculture - for nearly two years. She was paid 210 rupees (three dollars) per day, which her mother collected each month. Much of India's $42 billion-a-year textile and clothing export industry is located in western Tamil Nadu and to boost productivity and increase margins, parts of this lucrative supply chain are built on bonded labor. Mills mainly hire young girls, offering 30,000 to 60,000 rupees ($450 to $900) to their families for three years' work under so-called "Sumangali" schemes with the money paid at the end of the fixed term, in a form of bonded labor. VERBAL AND SEXUAL ABUSE A study 2014 into Tamil Nadu's textile industry by the Freedom Fund, a philanthropic initiative dedicated to ending modern slavery, and C&A Foundation found workers were also often subjected to low wages, excessive and sometimes forced overtime requirements, lack of freedom of movement as well as verbal and sexual abuse. The study said it was difficult to gauge the exact scale of the problem, but a conservative estimate suggests there may be at least 100,000 girls and young women being exploited in this way. The Thomson Reuters Foundation in February launched a new initiative with C&A Foundation aimed at raising awareness of trafficking and forced labor across South Asia. This week's women's union report said the teenage mill worker had found it difficult to cope with the work pressure. "Every day she did four hours of overtime, after completing an eight hour shift. After one year she wanted to leave, but her parents convinced her to complete the contract period," the report said. "She was sexually harassed by a male worker and had complained to her brother and the mill management." No one at the mill could be reached to comment. M.A. Britto, convener of the Campaign Against the "Camp Coolie" (Sumangali) System said such reports were common. "Mill managements try to hush these up. Often wages due to the girl are withheld and released only if the family drops the case. Or they make up stories of the girl having an affair and families are shamed into silence," he said. (Reporting by Anuradha Nagaraj, Editing by Ros Russell; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking and climate change. Visit www.trust.org)
Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting
Rest in peace, rockstar.
- The Daily Beast
Reuters/Arnd WiegmannTheatrical rock superstar Meat Loaf, whose Bat Out of Hell is one of the bestselling albums of all time, has died at the age of 74. Reports say the singer and actor had recently fallen sick with COVID-19.In an emotional statement posted to Facebook early Friday, the performer’s family said he was with his wife when he died and had said his final goodbyes to his two daughters in the past 24 hours. The star sold 100 million albums in his five-decade career and starred in movie
- Access Hollywood
Arnold Schwarzenegger was involved in a serious car accident. The actor was in a crash while driving his Yukon SUV near his home in Los Angeles at around 5PM PT on Friday, as seen in photos obtained by TMZ. The 74-year-old’s Yukon SUV was photographed on top of a red Prius.
The Keeping Up the Kardashians alum posted a series of images of herself only wearing a bikini, fuzzy boots and sunglasses during a ski trip in Aspen, Colorado on Thursday
A neighbour made the grim discovery after peering through his window.
- The Wrap
"He is such a bright light who cared so deeply about the happiness of others," King says in a statement
- Celtics Wire
But does it make sense for either team to pull the trigger?
- Business Insider
The former Trump lawyer Jenna Ellis says the January 6 committee members are subpoenaing her because they're 'mad they can't date' her
Ellis was subpoenaed on Tuesday, along with the former Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani, Sidney Powell, and Boris Epshteyn.
The January 6 committee obtained a draft of post-insurrection White House remarks that said 'the election fight is over.' Trump gave a speech but left out that sentence.
The House committee probing the Capitol riot has obtained a document from the Trump White House titled "Remarks on National Healing," per Politico.
- Country Living
With 12 seasons portraying Danny Reagan on the hit show Blue Bloods under his belt, it's safe to say Donnie Wahlberg is comfortable in front of the camera. But some fans may not know about his behind-the-scenes work.
- The Daily Beast
ABCOn Thursday night, Jimmy Kimmel gleefully ran down the significant legal problems facing former President Donald Trump during his monologue.“The legal woes for Trump are piling up,” said Kimmel. “The attorney general in New York says she has evidence that the Trump Organization engaged in a pattern of deception, and today we learned that the DA in Fulton County, Georgia, has requested a special grand jury to look into his post-election shenanigans there. On top of that, the Supreme Court clea
Two Canadians died of gunshot wounds after an argument turned violent at a resort near Cancun on Mexico's Caribbean coast, authorities said on Friday. Both guests at the upscale resort on the Riviera Maya of Quintana Roo state had criminal records, said Mexican officials, citing information from the Canadian police. Mexican police are searching for another person thought to have fired the shots who had a "long" criminal record in Canada, said the attorney general's office in Quintana Roo, home to a stretch of white-sand beach resorts and lush jungles.
- Associated Press
Dale Earnhardt Jr. was voted NASCAR’s most popular driver a record 15 times. “When I stumbled, you guys were right there ready to lift me back up,” Earnhardt said to his fans. Earnhardt was inducted into NASCAR's 12th Hall of Fame class on Friday night along with late-model driver Red Farmer and the late Mike Stefanik, a decorated modified driver who died in a plane crash in 2019.
- Yahoo Sports
"He could have ended his career. And he has a history of this. That to me was really dangerous."
- The Daily Beast
Moab PoliceBrian Laundrie scrawled messages in a notebook admitting that he killed his girlfriend Gabby Petito, the FBI said in a statement Friday as they announced that their investigation into the couple’s deaths was now closed. The notebook was found alongside Laundrie’s remains in a wooded area in Florida in October, weeks after police say he killed Petito while they were traveling the country in a van.“The FBI’s primary focus throughout the investigation was to bring justice to Gabby and he
- The Daily Beast
HandoutRosie Diven, a mother of three in rural South Carolina, had no idea her 16-year-old son had COVID-19 until a fearsome syndrome nearly killed him.Branson Diven had been vomiting and suffering a loss of appetite when Rosie brought him to an urgent care center near their home in Hartsville on Dec. 10. He did not have classic COVID symptoms such as a sore throat or a cough, and after testing negative for COVID and positive for flu, he was sent home under the assumption he would soon be better
- Los Angeles Times Opinion
What happened in the Oval Office on Jan. 6, 2021? And why does the Trump Organization seem to be so shady about its assets? Surely, Ivanka knows.
- Tacoma News Tribune
A wall of water 60 feet high could hit some coastal areas of Washington state.
- ProFootball Talk on NBC Sports
Cowboys receiver Amari Cooper signed a five-year, $100 contract before the 2020 season. It made him the league’s highest-paid receiver in 2021 with a $20 million base salary and a $22 million cap number. Yet, Cooper tied for 39th in receptions (68), 34th in receiving yards (865) and tied for 37th in points among non-kickers [more]
- Footwear News
Britney Spears makes purple look edgy.