Malappuram can well claim to be the first ‘nokkukooli’-free district in Kerala, where the organised practice of extortion by headload workers without doing any job was banned two months ago.
The district was ahead of others by implementing a uniform rate of labour for loading and unloading in the organised sector.
Employers, labour organisations and labour officials had signed a memorandum of understanding recognising 15 conditions well before the State abolished the practice of ‘nokkukooli’.
The district witnessed only one complaint about ‘nokkukooli’ since Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan declared the State free of this ‘organised extortion’ on May 1.
District Collector Amit Meena said that the complaint from Nilambur was addressed by speedy intervention, and by making the labourers return the cash they wrested in the name of nokkukooli.
“Nokkukooli ban had been effectively implemented in Malappuram well before the State formally announced it on May 1,” said Mr. Meena.
A meeting of labour unions and officials held here on Thursday reviewed the ‘nokkukooli’ abolition, and found that the district had accepted the ban in totality.
The Labour Department has published the rates of loading and unloading for 251 items. The list will be available at the District Labour Office.
Mr. Meena said that anyone found violating the norms would have to face stringent action.
People could contact the labour office at 0483-2734814 if they had any grouse.
District Labour Officer R. Rammohan and representatives of different unions took part in the meeting.
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