Destitute Tea garden workers left at the mercy of owners

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Mirik, Darjeeling: January 12, 2012

What came as an insensitive response of the owners of Panighhata tea garden, hundreds of workers are facing financial crisis as uncertainty on their future is getting darker.

Due to indefinite postponement of Panighhata tea garden, after the notice was posted on December 27 by the owners, nearly 1400 workers are facing severe problems. Lack of finance is what troubling them most.

‘Nagarik Adhikar Manch’ (NAM), a newly formed association for the welfare of workers met and submitted their demands to BDO, SDO, Joint Labour Commissioner and local MLA Rohit Sharma. Joint Labour Commissioner stated that the owner of tea garden will be called on January 20 and proper decision will be taken “Our focus is not on who opens the tea garden but the core motto is to open it as soon as possible”, said Rajen Mikhia, General Secretary of NAM. He also demanded that government should call the owner and open the tea garden or else the lease should be called off. Authority should be given to NAM to supply the workers with every comfort. Their sufferings should be minimized.

GJM Labour Union Jeet Man Tamang demanded that the factory should be opened by DIDPLU.The workers usually have no formal employment contract and are at the mercy of the company. if anything goes wrong or there is a dispute or delay, the workers are always the first to be sacked and the last to be paid.

Sikkim Mail



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