JORHAT, Sept 18 - The management of Heeleakah Tea Estate at Kharikatia under Mariani Police Station in the district today evening agreed to withdraw lockout in the garden from tomorrow.
This decision was taken in a conciliatory meeting convened by the Assistant Labour Commissioner (Jorhat) Ishanu Shah, which was attended by senior executives of the garden, officials from Titabar sub-divisional administration and police officials along with representatives of workers� union and from tea tribes students� bodies.
Mariani MLA Rupjyoti Kurmi was also present in the meeting. On Saturday, lockout was declared indefinitely in the garden following eruption of violence on Friday evening during the process of bonus payment.
Shah told The Assam Tribune this evening that the garden management in the meeting agreed to withdraw lockout from tomorrow and resume daily work in the garden following assurances from the workers� union to extend all possible cooperation to the management, besides maintaining peace. It also urged the workers not to repeat the Friday-type incident.
The garden is owned by The Sottish Assam (India) Limited based in Kolkata.
According to police sources, a mob comprising garden workers turned violent after word spread that the management had paid them less bonus instead of the maximum rate of 20 per cent as announced by the company earlier.
The management rejected the allegation and termed it as a �rumour� which was spread by some �mischief mongers� when the payment of bonus was under way. An official of Mariani Police Station said that trouble started late in the evening after 40 per cent of the total workers had received their bonus payment, when someone among them started claiming of being paid less amount of money than what they were to be paid.
Though the manager tried to pacify the mob, but they �failed to understand� and resorted to stone-pelting and damaged the manager�s office chamber. The official informed that a police team subsequently arrived in the garden and brought the situation under control.