DIMAKUCHI, July 4: Thousands of activists and tea workers in Udalguri district, under the aegis of Assam Chah Mazdoor Sangha (ACMS) Mangaldai branch, staged a dharna on Wednesday in the front of the tea garden managers’ offices with a demand to fix the wage of the tea garden workers at Rs 350. The ACMS leaders alleged that both the Centre and State Government do not think about the welfare of the tea workers’ community, except when they need them as vote bank. Tea garden workers of Borengajuli, Dimakuchi, Bamonjuli, Orangajuli, Nonaipara, Bhooteachang, Corramore, Hattigor, Bhergaon, Paneri and many gardens under ACMS Mangaldai branch came out to protest and shouted slogans against the tea company owners and the State Labour Minister.
The units under Managldai ACMS branch submitted memorandum to the State Labour Minister through the garden managers and a copy to the Labour Commissioner, reiterating their demand for implementation of the State’s Minimum Wage Act in the tea plantations of Assam. In a memorandum, they demanded payment of wages and bonus to the tea workers of the State as soon as possible, action against defaulting tea estates and hiking minimum daily wage for tea workers to Rs 350.
Mangaldai ACMS branch organizing secretary Siman Nag said, “Six months have passed but the government has not taken any initiative regarding the wage hike of tea workers. The government had formed a wage board and State Labour Minister Pallab Lochan Das was the chairman of the board but nothing so far has taken place regarding wage hike. The BJP government has been assuring till now but not a single step has been taken for the welfare of the tea workers.”