Hailakandi, Jan 15: After Serishpore, tea garden workers of Koyah tea estate have vowed to wipe out the mece of alcoholism.
The pledge was taken following an awareness meeting convened by the District Excise Department, led by Superintendent M. Amarendra th with the garden workers, distillers and sellers of illicit liquor at Koyah tea garden recently, stated a press release.
“After marathon discussions and persuasion, the garden workers, distillers and sellers of illicit liquor vowed to follow in the footsteps of their counterparts of Serishpore tea garden by wiping out the mece of alcoholism from their midst,” said th. He said it was by no means an easy task to convince them that illicit alcohol was adversely impacting their health conditions and eating into their hard-earned money. “We have had to make them understand that they have to get away from the drinking habit to live a long, healthy vigorous life and to sustain their income flow, as long absenteeism from work due to protracted illness compounds their economic condition as a result of drastic cut in their weekly wages,” he added.
th said that his team also tried to prevail upon the distillers and sellers of illicit alcohol to switch over to other avocations to eke out their livelihood. “We tried to drive home the point that they have been doing great harm to their community and adding to their cup of woes by pushing them to penury and to the jaws of death. And we urged upon them to switch over to fruitful and productive avocations for the sake of the community,” he said.
The senior excise official said the awareness meet focused on weaning away the garden teegers from the habit of boozing. “Most of the school drop-outs who are in their teens just fritter away their time, with some hit the bottle with vengeance out of sheer frustration,” said th, adding, “We have asked the parents and elderly to take the lead in prevailing over the youth to shun the practice of alcoholism and to send them to schools once again to continue with their studies to become good and able citizens of the tion tomorrow.”
th said it augured well that the workers, distillers and sellers would meet again after a fortnight to review the action plans initiated to stop illicit liquor forthwith. th exuded the optimism that Koyah would soon become an illicit liquor-free estate like Serishpore in the coming days. “The silent movement that is brewing will soon spread over to the remaining 15 tea gardens in Hailakandi district and to all the tea gardens in the Brahmaputra Valley and Barak Valley as a whole,” said th brimming with confidence.