Joint Action Committee for Tea Wage Workers (JACTWW) has slammed the BJP government for failing to keep their words of hiking the daily wage of the tea garden workers.
The forum of several tea tribe bodies has also alleged that former labour minister Pallab Lochan Das was responsible for not realising their demands. They said that the tea tribe bodies are determined to defeat Das who is contesting on a BJP ticket from Tezpur constituency.
“It’s very unfortunate that the BJP government didn’t fulfil what they had promised to us in 2014. Our demand of hiking the daily wage remained unfulfilled. Narendra Modi had promised us that the wage would be hiked at Rs 351.33 per day in the level of other states but in the last five years, nothing has been done. The tea workers didn’t even get the money of the area which is Rs 6,000,” said Bibek Das, the chief convenor of JACTWW addressing a press conference in Guwahati.
The body has also accused labour minister Pallab Lochan Das for obstructing on their way of getting higher wages.
“We must say that Pallab Lochan Das has crossed all the limits. He became the chairman of a wage hike advisory board. The board had submitted its suggestions of hiking the wage to Rs 351.33 but Pallab Lochan Das didn’t let it happen and took the side of the garden owners instead of the workers. This is not acceptable,” the chief convenor added.
Under all these circumstances, the forum has appealed the people to vote against the BJP and especially the former labour minister and BJP candidate Pallab Lochan from Tezpur.
At present the tea garden workers get Rs 167 in the Brahmaputra Valley and Rs 130 in Barak Valley gardens. There are more than 800 tea gardens in Assam.
Representatives of All Adivasi Students Association of Assam (AASAA), Akhil Bharatiya Chah Mazdoro Sangh and All Assam Adivasi Women Committee among others were present during the press conference.