Tea garden workers stage demonstration in Margherita
MARGHERITA, Aug 11: Members of the Assam Chah Mazdoor Sangha (ACMS) Margherita branch staged a protest dharna in front of the offices of managers from 38 tea estates falling under the ACMS Margherita branch. The protest was organised to highlight the grievances of tea garden workers and to demand their basic rights. Hari Nanda Gorh, secretary of ACMS Margherita branch, stated that during an executive meeting held on July 26 in Dibrugarh, it was concluded that tea garden workers in the Brahmaputra valley were being deprived of their fundamental rights. As a result, the ACMS submitted an 11-point demand to the Assam government. However, there has been no substantial progress on addressing these concerns. To express their dissatisfaction and draw attention to their demands, the ACMS decided to stage a one-hour dharna at all tea estates on Friday. The demands put forward by ACMS include ensuring a daily wage of Rs 351 for tea garden workers, providing Rs 232 to all workers of small tea industries, offering access to doctors, nurses, ambulances, and medicines to tea garden workers as a significant number of tea estates lack these essential facilities, granting Scheduled Tribe (ST) status to all 112 castes and sub-castes of tea tribes and Adivasi communities in Assam, providing land pattas and land to landless Tea tribes and Adivasi community members, and generating employment opportunities for educated tea tribes and Adivasi youths at prominent organisations like OIL, ONGC, IOC, and BCPL. Hari Nanda Gorh warned that if these 16 demands are not met promptly, the ACMS will escalate its protest against the Assam government and the management of tea estates in the region.