According to information, on Thursday, the renowned tea garden of the Barak Valley valley witnessed a scuffle between the labourers and the management of Kumbhirgram Tea Estate, leading to damages of property and vehicles of the tea garden.
Following the incident, the garden management garden declared a lockout since Friday last.
“Goodricke Tea Company, which runs the Kumbhirgram Tea Estate, has ordered for a lockout after the tea garden labourers first burnt the two-wheeler of ‘Tilla Babu’, who was measuring the leaves, and later on, ransacked the residence of the garden manager on Thursday evening last,” said sources.
“Sensing further trouble and fear for their lives, the ‘manager’, ‘Tilla Babu’, and ‘Borbabu’, left the garden and are holed up in Guwahati, according to latest reports that came in,” one of the garden employees told Northeast Now on condition of anonymity.
Another source informed that most of the garden officials, except the medical officer, are now in Kolkata.
The district administration, meanwhile, arranged for a tripartite talks, among the district administration, garden officials and the tea garden labourers at Udharbond Police Station, but, as the garden labourers back-tracked from going out there, the talks for the same failed on Friday.
A similar attempt to break the stalemate on Saturday last, at a different location, could not be initiated as the garden management informed that most of their top officials of the tea estate are out of Silchar, and are not in a position to sit for any talks right now.
It may be mentioned that issues related to weighing of leaves was the root cause of this fiasco.
Adding to that, as per sources, holding back the female tea garden labourers till 6 PM at work sites on Thursday last, the tea garden labourers took to task Ramjash Singh, the Borbabu of the garden. The matter didn’t stop just here, as the labourers later ransacked the bungalow of the manager.
As for now, to break this deadlock and withdraw the lockout of Kumbirgram Tea Estate, Barak Chah Sramik Union approached the Deputy Director of Labour Department, PS Haobam, on Saturday evening, to convene a tripartite talk at the earliest.