The ship recycling industry is labour intensive. The survival of the industry depends on the availability of labour. The work at the ship-recycling yard is laborious and so until and unless wages are high, labour is not induced to work
The ship recycling industry employs about 40000 workers each year in alang alone. The labourer employed is mostly illiterate and hail from India’s poorest States like Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The employment potential of this industry must be taken into account while deciding about its future. The wages at the yards vary between Rs 100 to Rs 200 per shift of eight hours. This is at par with industrial wages of workers.
Assuming the best scenario in the homestead of the workers, they would have earned a wage of Rs 35 per day of eight hours. Say they had work for 24 days a month for twelve months a year. This would give them a wage of Rs 10080 anually. [ Rs 35 x 24 days x 12 months = 10080 annually ]
Let us compare the worst scenario of the labourer at the ship recycling yard. He gets Rs 100 for eight hours at least. He works only ten months in a year, the months he can go back home. Each month he works for 24 days. His annual income would be Rs 24000 a year. [ Rs 100 x 24 days x 10 months = Rs 24000 annually ]
The difference in income per worker would be Rs 24000 – Rs 10080 = Rs 13920.
For 40000 workers this would be Rs 55.68 crores. Ship recycling creates a net wage income of Rs 56 crores annually.
“Apart from this, the ship recycling industry provides indirect employment to other half a million people employed in down stream industries”