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7 Feb 2017

Push for single TMC union

TT, Alipurduar, Feb.6: The president of the trade union floated by the Trinamul Congress for tea garden workers today said he would talk to office-bearers of other labour wings of the party in the sector to ensure that there was only a single union for the brew belt.
Four trade unions - Trinamul Tea Plantation Workers' Union, Terai Dooars Plantation Workers' Union, Darjeeling Zilla Cha Bagan Employees' and Workers' Union and the Dooars Union of Plantation Workers - function in the tea belt of north Bengal under the INTTUC.
Recently, at the directive of Trinamul chief Mamata Banerjee, the party had formed a single union called Cha Bagan Trinamul Congress Mazdoor Union, whose president is Mohan Sharma.
"As four unions work under the INTTUC, it creates confusion among tea plantation workers. That is why our party chief Mamata Banerjee has formed a new tea union. We have decided to sit with leaders of all the four unions and bring them under my union," Sharma, who is also the sabhadhipati of Alipurduar zilla parishad, said here today.
He said, if required, intervention of state Trinamul leaders would be sought in this regard.
The move, party sources said, was because polls to three-tier panchayats and the GTA were round the corner. While the GTA polls are slated to be held in the middle of this year, the panchayat elections are scheduled for 2018.
"Unless there is one trade union of Trinamul, like the CPM, Congress or the RSP, it is not possible to garner the votes of tea garden workers. The basic problem is that leaders of multiple unions are approaching workers. Such things create confusion among workers and they cannot really choose among the unions," a Trinamul leader here said.

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