In this file photo from 2017, people seen walking along a path at the high altitude Happy Valley Tea garden, in Darjeeling. (AFP/For Representative Purposes Only)
In this file photo from 2017, people seen walking along a path at the high altitude Happy Valley Tea garden, in Darjeeling. (AFP/For Representative Purposes Only)

Bengal tea garden workers want connecting road, say won't vote if demand not met

New Glencoe tea garden falls within the jurisdiction of Rangamati gram panchayat.
PTI | , Jalpaiguri
PUBLISHED ON FEB 14, 2021 06:14 AM IST

Workers of a tea garden in West Bengal's Jalpaiguri district on Saturday said that they would not cast their votes in the upcoming assembly elections if their demand for a metalled road connecting the garden with National Highway 31 is not met.

The tea garden workers under the banners of 'Trinamool Congress Cha Mazdoor Union', and the Adivasi Vikas Parishad's 'Sramik Sanghatan' marched on the kuchcha road from the New Glencoe tea garden to NH-31, raising the slogan, "No road no vote".

The workers said that they have been assured a number of times of a pucca road which never materialised.

Therefore, they have decided not to cast their votes until they get a proper metalled road, they said.

New Glencoe tea garden falls within the jurisdiction of Rangamati gram panchayat.

"Roads leading to all other tea gardens in this gram panchayat have become metalled. Only one is left," the Pradhan of the gram panchayat, Ashok Chikboraik, said.

The local MLA has taken up the matter and it was reported to the chairman of the Siliguri-Jalpaiguri Development Authority, he said.

"We are trying our best to get the work done," Chikboraik said. The Block Development Officer (BDO) of Mal block, Biman Chandra Das, said that no written application was sent to his office regarding the problem.

The BDO said that people should not mix up their demand with their democratic right.

"We will go and try to convince the people there," Das said.

Assembly election is due in the state in April-May.

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