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Abhishek Banerjee keeps word, abandoned tea garden in Alipurduar reopens

Kohinoor tea estate in Alipurduar-II block of the district was abandoned by management of the garden in December last year

Our Correspondent Alipurduar Published 06.05.23, 05:56 AM
Abhishek Banerjee.

Abhishek Banerjee. File photo

A tea estate in Alipurduar, abandoned for the past six months, reopened on Friday, within eight days of Trinamul national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee’s assurance that it would reopen soon.

The Kohinoor tea estate in Alipurduar-II block of the district was abandoned by the management of the garden in December last year.


With Kohinoor, the state has managed to reopen seven closed tea gardens in the district in the past year. All these tea estates have been taken over by Merico, a company based in Calcutta.

“We have taken over the garden. By next week, we will pay Rs 1,000 as a temporary relief to each worker,” said Surojit Bakshi, the director of Merico.

He said that over the past six months, goons damaged the garden’s property, including factory and bungalows, and took away equipment and furniture. Tea bushes need to be rejuvenated to resume production, he added.

“We have to make major investments to revive the garden. We hope the workers will cooperate with us,” added Bakshi.

There are 888 workers in Kohinoor.

Sources said that on December 7, Kohinoor workers who were to receive their fortnight’s wages, did not. The next day, some workers reached the garden’s office to speak with managerial representatives but found no one. Later, they found the management had abandoned the garden.

Since then, the administration as well as localTrinamul leaders had been trying to find a new entrepreneur to take over the garden.

Last week, when Abhishek was in the district for his ongoing outreach, he was informed about the issue. Sources said that he took certain initiatives immediately.

Trinamul leaders, who wanted the tea estate to reopen ahead of the panchayat elections, said workers assured them of cooperation.

“We will extend all help to the management. Workers will cooperate for the revival of the garden,” said Nakul Sonar, the chairman of Trinamul Cha Shramik Union.

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