You are on page 1of 19

Karmika School of Construction Workers

401-402, Akashganga Complex, Brahmkshatriya Co-op. Society, Gujarat College Road, Navrangpura, Ahmedabad: 380 009. GUJARAT, INDIA. Phone: +91-79-26560529Telefax: +91-79-26560536Web: E-Mail:
The views expressed in this paper are the views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), or its Board of Governors, or the governments they represent. ADB does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included in this paper and accepts no responsibility for any consequence of their use. The countries listed in this paper do not imply any view on ADB's part as to sovereignty or independent status or necessarily conform to ADB's terminology.

Mahila Housing SEWA Trust

Bijalben Brahmbhatt, Director

Key Activities of MHT
   

   

Providing of basic infrastructure in slums and low income areas in partnership with Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) – 138895 households & 694475 poor directly Developing slum upgradation plans with urban local bodies to plan and design basic infrastructure in slums – Nagpur, Ahmedabad,Surat,Baroda, Electrification for low income households – Over 3,24,000 poor houses in Ahmedabad and Surat Karmika School for Construction workers- Trained over 7500 construction workers in masonry, tiling, plastering, plumbing, carpentry, electrification, Planning and construction of low income housing after the earthquake in Gujarat over 7000 houses Training awareness and capacity building of Community Based Organizations (CBOs) and Urban Local Bodies- over 200 CBOs Action, research and documentation-Impact studies, Policy for urban poor's on water and sanitation, bridging the market gap housing finance for the poor Also promotion of credit co-operatives: Surat & Baroda Improving the Energy Efficiency of poor household and creating Energy Auditor. Understanding and advocating for Land Tenural issues of the poor.

The Construction Sector : An Overview

 

Second largest in India in generating employment after Agriculture. Approximately 3.8 million workers engaged in the sector. 51% women in the sector. Sector contributes 5% of the country’s GDP and 8% of capital formation. Due to the Gatt Agreement the overall deployment is reduced from 1/50th to 1/15th of the earlier number.

A Study Of Construction Workers In The City Of Ahmedabad
  

 

93% of the women workers lacked any kind of training in construction. 36% of the women were skilled in 3-4 types of work. 70% of the women complained of constant body ache, headache, back pain, and pain in the legs and hands. 23.2% of the women workers had met with an accident in 1997. 55% of the women claimed that besides drinking water, no other facilities were provided to them. 90% of the women revealed that they were given no other benefits besides the daily wage. 85% of the women pointed out the need for appropriate changes in the construction sector so as to ensure regular employment.

Skilled and Unskilled Work : Proportion and Earnings

The proportion of skilled workers has increased considerably from 24% to 39% in the last 5 years.
30% for Masonry work. 10% for Plaster work. 50% for Plumbing work.

While their earning have increased in real terms by :
  

MHT initiated imparting training to the construction labourers in 1998. In 2003 skill upgradation activities at MHT were consolidated as “The KARMIKA School for Construction Workers”. The KARMIKA School offers training in a variety of trades. It seeks to augment the skills of construction workers in the context of globalization and its impact. OBJECTIVES OF KARMIKA SCHOOL FOR CONSTRUCTION WORKERS  Providing skills training for various trades in construction industry to all construction workers, with focus on women workers.  Monitoring, delivering and facilitating courses at other centers of vocational training.  Providing basic functional literacy to construction workers.  Testing, evaluation and certification of skilled construction workers.  Preparing customized training materials with audio-visual aids for workers with low level of basic literacy.  Opening decentralized training centers.  Conducting distance learning and refresher courses.  Providing technical input and supervision to partner institutions.  Developing and promoting low cost construction methods and materials.


• • • • • •

Trainees preferably of age group 20-40 years. Trainees whose family is dependent on his/ her income. Trainees belonging to minorities groups like Muslim community, SC / ST and other backward class shall be given preference. He/ She should be preferably working as labourer / construction worker and should be willing to continue his/ her work in the same field. He/ She should show readiness to work at any site. He/ She should have basic reading and writing skills / should be willing to learn.


Work experience – It is the most important trait for selection of trainers. The number of trades and the number of years a trainer has worked are added as weightage. Personal interview – It is also important for a trainer to communicate and teach the trainees well. Certificates – The skills of construction workers in India are passed on from father to son. They are formally not certified as construction workers. Still, if the trainer is certified by any organization then also it is considered.

Impact of the training on Construction workers

70% 60% 50%

Before Training After Training


40% 30% 20% 10% 0%



11 to 20 days 21 to 30 days

Less Than 10 Days

For trained women there has been increase in the number of days of work.


Rise in Income







30% 20% 20%


0% No Yes

Eighty percent trained women reported rise in their income after training.

From Labourer to Karigar
120% 100% 100%



Before Training
60% 50%

After Training

40% 30% 20% 20%

0% 0%



Helper to Karigar


The trained women construction workers reported getting the work of helper to the Karigar and some of them started doing Karigar work such as masonry. Few women trained by Karmika have become independent contractors.

Contractor behavior towards women
 After training some women
90% 80% 70%


developed confidence and could go alone for work.  85% of the trained women

60% 50% 40% 30%

reported that contractor talked

Before Training After Training

nicely and with respect.
 7% of the trained and women verbal reported sexual


abuse as compared to nearly one fourth of the sample before training.


10% 0%



Speaks Nicely and Sexually Harrasses Respects us while and Abuses doing work


Confidence Level

 68% of the trained women reported skilled  45% that construction have of now doing their

70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 32%


confidence in doing more work the any has gone up. confidence

10% 0% No Yes

skilled construction work.  Bargaining power has increased after the training.

 Training gave them literacy, numeracy and capacity to take even
precise and minutiae measurements

Ability to do skilled work
10% 18% 45%



Any Type of Work Able to do Chantar, Plaster Other

Electric Work Better Finishing with Greater Speed

Increase in Women’s ability to do skilled work after training

Collaboration with CIDC & IGNOU
In order to ensure that workers also receive certification in their chosen trade,
MHT partnered with the Construction Industry Development Council (CIDC) to undertake testing and certification. MHT also partnered with the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) to facilitate distance learning programmes as well as training and certification.

Private Sector Partnership
Public, Private and NGO Partnerships - Karmika has forged and strengthened linkages with the following private-sector building firms in the construction industry in order to upgrade the skills of women construction workers through modern machineries: Gujarat Ambuja Cement Limited; the Bakeri Group of Builders; Hindustan Construction Company (HCC); and Larsen and Toubro.

National skill development council has limited understanding of informal sector.  Addressing mind sets is an issue.  Government norms not favourable to women.