Published in

Hear The Voices of India’s Shramiks

Photo by Shubham Verma on Unsplash

Civis’ purpose and mission, is to ensure that the voice of the people makes its way to lawmakers and informs their decision making processes on laws and policies.

One of our largest challenges however, is consistently reaching the communities who are most impacted by a law. Whose input carries deep and nuanced understanding of on-ground challenges, and from whose vantage point we get a chance to see the gaps which the law can fix.

Amid changes in India’s labour laws, Gramvaani and Civis partnered to take the Draft Rajasthan Code on Wages Rules, 2021 to labourers in manufacturing units across three states, and gather their inputs on the proposed changes to the law.

Feedback was collected from 29 labourers employed with automobile, alcohol and technology equipment manufacturers. Together, we worked towards simplifying the law, translating it in Hindi. Recording the simplified version to encourage feedback submission and collecting feedback through interviews on ground.

The feedback shared covered a wide gamut of concerns, some of which the law helped address.

Experiences of labourers through the pandemic demonstrated the
necessity for safeguards related to lay-offs to be incorporated into the Code. Most respondents shared that they did not receive salary slips or employment benefits at their place of work, which the Code could help improve.

25% of the feedback received pertained to the provision of the 8 hour limit on a working day (as stipulated by the Code). The respondents interviewed worked 12 hour work days and received an hourly remuneration for their work. They feared that their pay would be reduced if an 8 hour stipulation is made, reducing their earnings by a third of their current drawing.

Listen in to what some members of the community had to say about Rajasthan’s Draft Code on Wages:

A respondent working in the automobile industry was concerned that with an 8 hour work day mandated, companies would hire more staffers in shifts, and reduc the hourly pay made to existing employees, here his concerns here:

Another respondent gave the policy 4 out of 5 stars for adressing the rights of labourers, hear his input here:

All feedback was submitted to the Department of Labour, Government of Rajasthan.

If you often wonder — what is the power of your voice, this may just be it.

Gramvaani is a social technology company incubated out of IIT-
Delhi. Started in 2009 with the intent of reversing the flow of information, to make it bottom-up instead of top-down.

Civis is a non-profit platfrom that works to enable effective dialogue between Governments and citizens, on draft laws and policies — using technology to bridge the gap between the two.

If you would like to partner with us, or gather feedback from your own beneficiaries — reach out to us at: info [at] civis [dot] vote.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Antaraa Vasudev

Antaraa Vasudev


Geek with Ballerina feet. Experimenting with civic technology for democracy.