After an employee of a tea garden in Central Assam's Nagaon district was allegedly assaulted by an assistant manager, angry labourers today ghearaoed the estate management and attempted to burn down the tea factory but the police reached the spot on time and brought the situation under control.
Amsoi tea estate assistant manager Pankajesh Garaip had allegedly beat up the guard, Durgeswar Tanti, at his bungalow last night, police sources said.
Today the labourers in the garden angered by the assault gheraoed the estate management and attempted to burn down the tea factory, the sources said.
Police rushed there and brought the situation under control and took Garaip into custody for allegedly assaulting the guard, they said.
On December 26 last, a mob of disgruntled labourers hacked the proprietor of MKB Tea Estate Mridul Bhattacharyya in Tinsukia district and burnt his body parts along with his wife alive by setting their bungalow on fire.
The killers of Bhattacharya after hacking him ate his flesh before setting it on fire, according to the confessional statements of the accused before the police.
A few years back tea planter Rupak Gogoi was burnt alive by the workers of his garden in Golaghat.
In another incident in Sonitpur district, a deputy manager and assistant manager of Sepoi tea garden were burnt alive in front of their family members by irate labourers on the Durga Puja bonus payment issue some years ago.
Tea industry sources claimed that outside influences were responsible for such attacks with different labour unions and political parties attempting to establish base among the tea workers.
The situation often get aggravated during the time for payment of puja bonus when these organisations raise unrealistic demands on behalf of the workers or instigate them against the rate fixed by the garden management in consultation with the only recognised union Assam Chah Mazdoor Sangha (ACMS), the sources said.