* 15 tea gardens owned by the ATC had suffered a loss of Rs 334.42 cr, as on March 31, 2014.
* The amount of due gratuity money to be paid by the ATC has now increased to a whopping Rs 16.87 cr
* The default amount pertaining to the PF fund in these 15 ATC owned tea gardens is Rs 60.15 cr
BY OUR STAFF REPORTER
GUWAHATI, April 8: The Assam Tea Corporation (ATC), a public sector undertaking (PSU), is dying a slow death due to mismagement and lack of vision on the part of the State government. The responsibility of the ATC’s present dismal condition should be taken by Pradyut Bordoloi who had been the State industry, commerce and public enterprise minister from 2004 to mid January 2015. During his tenure as minister, he had failed to revive the organization which has 15 tea gardens in the State.
It may also be mentioned here that 18 other State owned PSUs have closed down in the State since 2001.
Sources said that 15 tea gardens owned by the ATC had suffered a loss of Rs 334.42 crore, as on March 31, 2014.
The ATC owned gardens currently have 15,523 labourers, 471 permanent employees, 622 casual employees, 7 magers and 40 assistant magers in their workforce, sources said. Sources further stated that the condition of the ATC has deteriorated to such an extent that 8,778 employees working in its gardens are yet to get their gratuity money since 1991. The amount of due gratuity money to be paid by the ATC has now increased to a whopping Rs 16.87 crore. Allegations are that many employees once working in the ATC owned tea gardens died without getting their gratuity.
Not only the gratuity money, the ATC owned gardens have failed to deposit the provident fund (PF) money since 2005-2006. The poor labourers and other workers in these tea estates have high expectations of their PF fund.
According to sources, the default amount pertaining to the PF fund in these 15 ATC owned tea gardens is Rs 60.15 crore along with delayed interest amount of Rs 71.73 crore, which is not a small amount.