Local government officials and a tea association have taken steps to resolve the dispute between the two parties...
Digital Desk: Approximately 500 tea garden workers in Assam's Hailakandi district have initiated a protest after the authorities purportedly imposed a temporary stoppage of operations.
Workers at Gaglacherra tea garden, around 20 kilometres from Hailakandi town, have been protesting the farm's decision since Thursday, following a lockout issued the day before.
Local government officials and a tea association have taken steps to resolve the dispute between the two parties.
On Friday, a team of authorities led by magistrate Jhintu Bora and labour officer PK Malakar visited the garden and informed the labourers that the problem will be taken up with the district deputy commissioner.
The garden's authorities could not be reached.
Radheshyam Kurmi, the president of the local panchayat, claimed that the tea estate authorities discreetly posted the lockout notice on Wednesday night and then departed the premises.
Thursday was payment day, and the government retreating in this manner has agitated our people, he said.
Kurmi further claimed that labourers were paid less than the official rate on a daily basis, and that female workers were pushed to pick more tea leaves than was required.
We now have no one to address our complaints, he asserted.
The Tea Association of India's Barak Valley General Secretary Saradindu Bhattacharjee confirmed the occurrence and expressed hope that the concerns would be resolved shortly.