meeting in Eastern UP
Eastern UP has a large concentration of firemen community. These
firemen migrate to thousands of brick kilns in the north and east
India. TERI along with its NGO partners, PEPUS (Paryavaran Evam
Prodyogiki Utthan Samiti) at Allahabad and Lokmitra at Rae Bareli,
have initiated dialogue with the firemen community since 2001. The
project also conducted a number of 'comprehension and sensitization
workshops' to sensitize and enhance the capacity of various partners
involved in the project. This helped in understanding the social
issues relevant for the firemen community.
On-site (at the kiln where they work) and off-site
(at their villages) dialoguing with firemen and master firemen were
conducted to make assessment of their conditions. The project also
entailed interacting with the families of the firemen (particularly,
women). These interactions have led to formation of sangathans
or groups called BPVS (Bhatta Parivar Vikas Samities) at village
level as well as block level in Allahabad and Rae Bareily districts.
Upto 2005, BPVS has been formed in more than 120 villages in these
two districts. With the women of firemen families playing an important
role in its formation and operation, these sangathans are
actively involved in evolving a common agreement (Iqrarnama)
between the firemen, master firemen, and BTK entrepreneurs on various
issues such as wages and other essential facilities.
TERI is promoting VSBK as a livelihood option
among the firemen community. Two VSBKs at Akhirajpur and Pure Kalandhar
have been set up with members from the firemen community. The project
has provided technical and financial assistance for setting up and
operation of the VSBKs. With the technical performance established
through these two VSBKs, the project is making assessment of the
financial viability and evolving strategies for adoption of the
VSBK among the firemen community in east UP.
In Thogur (Tamil Nadu), TERI provides technical
assistance to women SHGs (self help groups) for setting up of a
VSBK. It is providing continuous support for adoption of the unit
by the SHGs.
Training programmes in BTK operation
dialogue in progress at site
TERI conducted training programmes and seminars
for various stakeholders of the brick industry aimed at awareness
generation and skills upgradation. These included the following.
on improved firing process focusing on the BTK owners and supervisors
during March 2001.
programmes for the PSCST (Punjab State Council for Science &
Technology) and ESPS- Nepal (Energy Sector Program Support-Nepal)
professionals, in Bhatinda in Punjab in energy auditing of brick
kilns during March 2003.
Establishing testing laboratory
at INP (Int Nirmata Parishad) facility
TERI provided technical and financial assistance to INP- Varanasi
along with SIDBI (Small Industries Development Bank of India) for
setting up a testing laboratory for testing of fuel and soil used
in brick making. It is one of the first such efforts by a local
industry association in the country. The laboratory is being used
by several brick manufacturers in eastern UP. TERI helped INP in
preparation of a business plan for expanding the facilities. For
example, a compressive strength testing machine was procured by
the lab for testing of fired bricks.