SILCHAR, Oct 24 - Disappointed with the Government inaction to revive the Nagaon and Cachar units of the Hindustan Paper Corporation (HPC), the employees of the mills have called for a 12-hour Barak bandh on November 22.
Manabendra Chakraborty, chief convener of the Paper Mills Revival Action Committee on Tuesday slammed the Government for its inability to keep the promises made to the people who are struggling to make both their ends meet owing to the closure of the mills. �During Namami Barak festival, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had assured us that steps would be taken to release the pending salaries and also efforts would be made to reopen the mills. It has been almost a year now and nothing has happened in this regard. We came to know that the Government has released Rs 469 crore for the revival of the closed NEPA paper mill in Madhya Pradesh. But the State Government has failed to sanction any money to resume production at one of the Navaratna industries in the State. It is a shame on the part of the government which was voted to power with great expectations. We have no other way left but to stage a bandh on November 22,� Chakraborty said.
He also criticised the intent of the government in failing to remit the pending salaries to the tune of Rs 90 crore even after being approved by the Parliament. �Around 38 employees have died since the closure of the mills for want of money. But nothing moves the Government which is busy pleasing the corporates. As per a report of a submission by Debabrata Saikia, the leader of the Opposition in the Assam Assembly, the Government has made up its mind to sell the mills covering an area of 3000 acres at an approximate market value of Rs 2,000 crore to private players at a nominal rate of Rs 750 crore. We want to know how a public enterprise can be sold the way it has been designed,� Chakraborty maintained.
Meanwhile, the committee has also criticized the role of Udhabondh MLA Mihir Kanti Shome for his alleged opposition towards reopening of the mills. The action committee members sought a clarification from the legislator for his opposition and demanded a CBI probe under the supervision of the Supreme Court.