DIBRUGARH, Oct 6 - The Kenduguri tea estate manager, Sanjay Gurtu along with his family members was whisked away by the police last night following a massive protest by workers against the backdrop of a physical fight between the manager and some workers. The manager sustained injuries on his head and lips.
The incident reportedly took place after one Amal Tanti had confrontation with the manager inside the manager�s office over his alleged suspension at around 5 pm yesterday. During the fight, some five to six workers rushed inside the office of the manager and all of them assaulted the manager, according to the workers. The workers also vandalized the office. Although the office executives and a few others managed to bring the situation under control, thousands of workers assembled at the factory campus, demanding ouster of the manager.
Injured Gurtu remained inside the office for safety till Pabitra Kumar Das, Executive Magistrate and a police team arrived at the scene.
The situation was very tense during the night hours as the crowd began to swell with every passing hour, the Magistrate said. The workers demanded that the manager be removed from the tea estate, alleging that he was very abusive and rude in his behaviour.
�The angry crowd repeatedly said that they were not at all happy with the manager�s behaviour. The manager, on the other hand, said that he was tough with the negligent workers. The crowd was pacified only after the resignation letter of the manager was read aloud to them,� Das said.
Meanwhile, the manager and his family fled from the garden residence hours after he tendered his resignation. The management of the tea estate has declared lockout following the incident, Gobordhan Lohar, secretary, Assam Chah Mazdoor Sangha (ACMS), Naharkatia Branch said.
The tea estate remained closed today following the lockout. In a meeting held at the garden today by the workers and leaders of ACMS and Assam Tea Tribes Students� Association (ATTSA), it was resolved that the lockout must be lifted and the workers would restore normalcy in the garden.
Kenduguri tea estate, a unit of the Kalyani Tea Company Limited with more than 1500 workers is about 70 kms from here. The plantation has a population of approximately 7,500.
The workers had received their puja bonus recently and are eagerly waiting for the puja revelry.