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Cyclone Amphan pushes back Jorhat e-auction to June 1

Online platform hit by storm; virtual event was earlier slated to start on May 21

By Roopak Goswami in Guwahati
  • Published 23.05.20, 3:38 AM
  • Updated 23.05.20, 5:30 AM
  • a min read
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Villagers gather after a road was washed away when the Borpani river flooded at Madhab Para near Kampur in Nagaon district of Assam on Friday (PTI Photo)

Super cyclone Amphan, which has wrecked Calcutta and its adjoining areas, has forced mjunction to defer the Jorhat auctions in Assam.

Though the auction was to start on May 21, it was postponed due to poor connectivity but on Friday, mjunction, which runs the Jorhat e-auction platform, said it has been deferred and the first sale now will be held on June 1.

A communication from mjunction to its buyers said electricity, phone and Internet connections have been severely disrupted at many places due to Amphan. The main server of the company, a 50:50 venture promoted by SAIL and Tata Steel, is in Calcutta.

“This has adversely affected incoming and outgoing phone calls, including other modes of communication like messaging, WhatsApp and emails. We received many requests from our buyers to defer the auction. Further, there was an overwhelming request from our seller members to include their tea in the first catalogue,” the communication said.

“Moreover, because our auctions are scheduled for every Monday, May 25 being a national holiday on account for Id, the first sale of Jorhat auctions will be on June 1,” it said.

Altogether 7,061 kg was on offer. The auctions at Jorhat are the first in the country without brokers. Jorhat is Assam’s second tea auction centre after Guwahati.

One of the novelties of the Jorhat e-auction platform is the quality vocabulary through which teas will be judged. Specific comments shall be given on leaf appearance, infusion and liquor. There shall be further sub-parameters under each of the broad heads. A rating system from one to 10 shall be followed with one being low in quality and 10 being excellent.

“We look forward to conduct our first auction with excellent teas, under a seamless connectivity. We ‘Thank You’ for your continued support,” the communication said.