Workers' protest continues in Sri Lankan rehabilitation camp in Kambamala tea estate
Wayanad: The agitation launched by the workers of Kambamala tea estate under the Kerala Forest Development Corporation (KFDC) in Wayanad demanding reinstatement of workers in the estate entered the 27th day after the talks between both parties failed to reach consensus.
The agitation was launched on July 15 after the estate authorities denied the workers jobs citing financial repercussions due to Covid. As many as 40 workers have reportedly lost their jobs.
The meeting with the Managing Director of KFDC on Wednesday failed to make any progress. "They promised to reinstate us from September 1, but they haven't assured us that it would be a permanent job. Moreover, it is not going to solve our problem. We need the job as soon as possible as we have been jobless since July," Sivakumar, one of the workers, told Mathrubhumi.com.
The Kambamala tea estate, bordering Kottiyoor and Periya forest ranges, is spread over an area of 100 hectares. It was launched in 1979 to rehabilitate expatriates from Sri Lanka. Around 120 families were initially brought here and were given jobs at the estate.
"Two people from one family are eligible for the job at the estate. This was how it was going on for years. However, in the last 10 years workers were not made permanent in their job even though they had been working for years in the estate," Sivakumar said.
As the work in the estate is their sole means of income, their plight is all the more. "We all are struggling financially due to Covid. Children are unable to pursue online classes because they could not pay the bills. The food kit from the government is the only source of relief we have. But how can we survive solely on it," he added.