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AASAA reiterates demand on wages

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Jan 23 - the All Adivasi Student Association of Assam (AASAA) has reiterated its demand to issue minimum wage notification on tea garden workers. The AASAA has been demanding a daily wage of Rs 330 for tea garden workers.

�The government�s notification on minimum wage of Rs 169/day must be issued immediately. We will continue to pressurize the tea management and the Union to provide a living wage to our brothers and sisters. Modern day slavery on the tea gardens must end now,� said Raphael Kujur, president, AASAA, in a press statement.

The AASAA had launched a statewide Hazra Badhao Andalon (Wage Campaign) in early 2014 mobilizing tea garden workers to demand an increase in their daily wage to Rs 330 per day.

Through cycle rallies, street processions and mass gatherings were organized in villages and towns across the State.

While AASAA is encouraged by the State Government�s recent decision to declare the legal minimum wage of tea garden workers at Rs 169/day, their demand for a just wage of Rs 330 continues.

The press release states that Assam leads the country in tea production, with more than 52 per cent of India�s total tea produced in the State.0

Despite the industry�s expected turnover of nearly Rs 33,000 crore by 2015, tea garden workers are the lowest paid in India�s organized sector. Earning Rs 94 per day, workers earn far below the statutory minimum wage in violation of the Minimum Wages Act and the Plantation Labour Act, Kujur said.

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