Sarada Jute Mill shut down, workers block road
The workers of Sarada Jute Mill blocked the Berhampore-Lalgola State Highway on Saturday morning after the mill decided to shut its shop.
The workers witnessed the sudden closure notice in the morning and the infuriated ones blocked the road for two hours and demanded the opening of the mill immediately.
“We were not informed earlier. It was a hasty decision of the authority. We will go for a protest movement,” said one of the union leaders.
The local police failed to convince the protesters to withdraw the blockade. The blockade started at 8 am and continued till 10 am as workers decided to lodge complaint with the local police station.
“We’ll also go the District Magistrate with the copy of FIR against the mill owners. The movement will last till the mill is reopened,” the union leader further said.
Sarada is the largest jute mill by production volume, in Murshidabad. With the closure of this jute mill, at least 1000 workers are now unemployed.
Meanwhile, the mill owners cited that they could not pay the labourers and workers as the demonetisation drive by the Centre has left them in a lurch.
The owners of the jute mills in Bengal pressed panic buttons over the acute cash crunch. The Centre’s sudden demonetisation drive left the mill owners in the lurch, as most of them are also anxious about payment of salaries.
“The mill owners are now suspecting production outage, as supply of the raw materials has already decreased. They are also anxious about the payment of salaries. Workers are paid once every fortnight in cash at almost every mill,” said a mill owner.