TN to file status report on Manjolai tea workers

In another petition, A John Kennedy submitted that the private company was forcing the labourers to vacate by opting for VRS or else their electricity and water supply would be cut.
Workers at a tea estate in Manjolai Hills
Workers at a tea estate in Manjolai Hills(File photo | S Senbagapandiyan)

MADURAI: The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court on Friday directed status quo be maintained on a batch of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) petitions, pertaining to the tea plantation workers of Manjolai tea estate in Tirunelveli, until the next hearing scheduled on July 8, and ordered the state to file a status report in this regard.

One of the petitions filed by one P Amutha sought the state government to frame a rehabilitation scheme for the families of Manjolai estate by granting free patta, house under Kalaignarin Kanavu Illam scheme, alternative employment and free education for the children of the workers.

“If the workers are to vacate the estate, then they would suffer without shelter. Hence, the state government should employ the workers in suitable posts,” she submitted.

In another petition, A John Kennedy submitted that the private company was forcing the labourers to vacate by opting for voluntary retirement scheme (VRS), or else their electricity and water supply would be cut. He urged the government to take over the estate, bring it under the control of TANTEA and continue uninterrupted supply of water and electricity.

Hearing the submissions, a division bench comprising Acting Chief Justice R Mahadevan and Justice GR Swaminathan directed the state government to file a status report, and also served notice to the respondents of the case, including Bombay Burmah Trading Corporation Limited.

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