Work in tea gardens of Assam hampered due to 12 hours strike called by AASAA demanding hike in daily wages of tea garden workers.
By Kanak Chandra Boro
Work in most of the tea gardens of Assam were affected on Monday following a 12-hour strike called by the All Adivasi Students’ Association of Assam (AASAA).
The strike has been called demanding a hike in daily wages of tea workers from Rs 167/- to Rs 351/-, besides in protest against lack of basic amenities like healthcare, clean drinking water, etc, to the workers.
During the protest, AASAA activists at many places also raised slogans against the Central and State governments.
The protest was also carried out at Daolabari Tea State in kokrajhar where the labour stay away from their work for 12 hours and protest under the banner of AASAA .
The association has expressed their deep concern on the issue of low wage payment which is a negligible amount of Rs. 137/- less than the statutory minimum wage.
The tea garden workers are the victim of lowest paid in the country’s organised sector. The protestors voiced against the state government and the tea estate owners and demanded justice of their cries and sorrow.
Speaking on the occasion Central AASAA president Stephen Lakra stated that the BJP lead state government assured to give Rs 351.33/-per labour as daily wage before 15 August but still the government not maintain their assurances.
On the other hand only Rs 30/- has increased from March which only Rs 167.00 has paid to per labour as daily wage which is very unsatisfactory and negligible.
He mentioned that the labourers working in the tea estate were skilled and not unskilled as because the adivasi’s are engaged in tea business for ages since the British rule
Lakra further added that if the government not agree their demands then they will locked out all the tea state factories in future.
Meanwhile the AASAA also criticised the BJP-ruled governments both at the Centre and Assam for neglecting the interest of tea workers.