Parishad cries power bias

The Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Vikas Parishad today warned of a non-co-operation movement if the electricity company disconnected power supply to the Bharnobari Tea Estate in the Dooars.

The workers of the garden turned away the officials of the West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd when they had come to yank off power lines to the estate on Saturday.

“We protest against the biased attitude of the power officials. They do not have the guts to collect crores of rupees due in the hills for months, while they cannot wait for a few days in Bharnobari. If we find that power supply is disconnected in the workers’ quarters in the garden or in any other place during exams, we will launch non-cooperation movement against the government,” said Rajesh Lakra, the general secretary of the Terai-Dooars Coordination Committee of the Parishad.

The state power minister, Mrinal Banerjee, during his visit here last month, had said although his department had incurred heavy losses, it would not disconnect power supply to the hills on humanitarian grounds.

“How can officials of his department think of disconnecting lines in Bharnobari then? Don’t they or the minister find it inhuman to put so many Madhyamik examinees in a spot?” Lakra asked

“We want to make it clear that the laws and rules are same for everybody. If the government relaxes some norms, everybody should be benefited. There should be no bias as is seen in this case,” Lakra said.

The workers blamed the garden management for the problems, saying the money deducted from their wages for power consumption had not been deposited with the electricity company.

Jayanta Banerjee, the manager of the estate, said at least one month’s bill would be paid latest by Wednesday.