GUWAHATI: The Assam Tea Tribe s’ Students’ Association (ATTSA) has threatened to shut down all the tea gardens in the state on March 22 alleging a slipshod attitude towards tea workers of Assam.
The reactions came after the Gauhati high court recently asked the government not to take any coercive action against the tea companies and an association for not complying with wage revision notification of tea workers in Assam. The case was listed for the next hearing on March 15.
Recently, BJP led state government in Assam has increased the daily wages of tea workers from Rs 167 to Rs 217. Following which Indian Tea Association and 17 other tea planters have moved the high court.
ATTSA president Dhiraj Gowala alleged, “The BJP government is only giving us false promises just to gain votes in the upcoming elections. While we have been demanding to raise our daily wage to Rs 351, the government hiked it to Rs 217. Then also, the planters moved the court against it. It means the government did not consult with them and lied to all.”
ATTSA has also decided to move to Gauhati high court against the wage hike issue and seeking clarification from the government.
In Assam, the wage of tea workers has remained an election issue for ages as the community has been demanding it for decades. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and even the BJP in its vision document before the 2016 state polls had promised to hike the daily wage to Rs 351.
Assam has over 10 lakh tea workers in the organised sector working in 850 tea estates with the tea tribe community determining votes in some 30 to 35 assembly seats.