Tea garden workers plucking tea leaf. (File image)

The Assam Chah Mazdoor Sangha (ACMS) on Monday condemned Assam government’s decision to increase the working hours of labourers from 8 hours to 12 hours in a day.

ACMS general secretary Rupesh Gowala said they condemned the Assam government decision and urged them to withdraw it.

The Assam Cabinet on Friday followed other BJP- ruled states in approving labour reforms in a bid to ‘boost the economy and investment’ at a time when economic activities have come to a grinding halt due to the novel Coronavirus induced lockdown.

The measures in the labour reforms includes- introduction of fixed – term employment and increase in shift duty of workers during Covid-19 period from eight to 12 hours, numbers of minimum employees for implementation of the Factories Act has also been doubled from existing figures for various categories of factories while those with fewer employees have been exempted from registration and minimum number of workers for implementation of the Contract Labour Act has also been increased from 20 to 50.

“The government could increase the working hours because it is anti-labourer. We urged government to withdraw their decision otherwise the labourers will start protest against it. If the workers start agitation then government will be responsible for the agitation,” Gowala said.

He said that the government should refrain from adopting such anti-labour policies.

Avik Chakraborty

Avik Chakraborty is Northeast Now Correspondent in Dibrugarh. He can be reached at: babs8oct@gmail.com