Voicing concern over “privatisation of mines”, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday alleged that it was a violation of labour laws and it meant pushing the workers into “bonded” labour, as he shared a video of his recent interaction with workers of the Singareni Coal Mines in Telangana. In the video shared by Gandhi on his YouTube channel, he tells the workers that the Congress stand is very clear that there should be no privatisation is strategic sectors.
“A few days ago, I got a chance to meet and talk to the workers and employees of the coal mines of Singareni. Listened to their problems, and after listening I came to know that the root of every problem is the privatisation of mines,” he said in his post along with the video. “This privatisation is a violation of labour laws and is a means of pushing workers into bonded labour. Some capitalists will benefit from this and the result will be what I have been saying for a long time – the rich will get richer, and the poor will become poorer,” the former Congress chief said.
In the video, the workers ask Gandhi to ensure that the Congress in its manifesto states its stand against such privatisation aimed at benefiting a few. Later, in a post in Hindi on X, Gandhi said, “After meeting the workers of the Singareni coal mines, it came to light that their exploitation is part of a larger conspiracy.” “Privatisation of Indian mines, bringing expensive coal from abroad, then increasing the electricity bill to pickpocket the public…The Prime Minister has imposed a ‘hidden tax’ that is hollowing out the country like termite — Adani Tax!” he charged.
Gandhi, in his interaction with the workers which happened during his Telangana visit last month, had assured that the mines of Singareni Collieries will not be privatised and alleged that there was an attempt to sell it to Adani, but “we got it stopped”.
He has been interacting with various sections of society — from mechanics and porters to students and carpenters — asserting that his Bharat Jodo Yatra, which he undertook from Kanyakumari to Kashmir, continues with these interactions.