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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Workers not coming to 500 powerloom factories in Surat after ‘threat letter’

The letter, written in Odia language and pasted at different places in the industrial area in Amroli, demands to hike the workers' wages and warns of "chopping off body parts" of those who go to work for the existing wages.

By: Express News Service | Surat |
November 19, 2021 2:44:25 am
Anjani industrial estate, powerloom factory, threat letter, Amroli, Amroli news, wage hike, Indian ExpressThe copies of the handwritten letter were found at various places in the Anjani industrial areas including tea stalls and outside mobile shops. (Representational)

Workers of around 500 powerloom factories in Anjani industrial estate in Surat are not coming to job since Wednesday fearing a “threat letter”.

The letter, written in Odia language and pasted at different places in the industrial area in Amroli, demands to hike the workers’ wages and warns of “chopping off body parts” of those who go to work for the existing wages.

The copies of the handwritten letter were found at various places in the Anjani industrial areas including tea stalls and outside mobile shops.

The letter states that the wages of the workers “have not been increased since the last years” and it demanded a hike of 20 paise per metre. No name of any organization or union was mentioned in the letter. Photos of the handwritten pamphlets were shared on WhatsApp groups as well.

On Thursday afternoon, the factory owners carried out a meeting among themselves over the issue. Later in the afternoon, a team of delegates from the association handed over an application to Amroli police demanding strict action against those behind the letter.


Anjani Industries Association president Vijay Mangukiya told The Indian Express, “There are around 35,000 workers in our industrial estate and majority of them are from Odisha. We have around 50,000 powerloom machines with 25 lakh meter production per day. On Wednesday and Thursday, the work came to a halt. During the Covid-19 lockdown, we have provided the workers ration kits and also financial support… We are giving all support to the workers but they are also feared of their lives. We assured them of police protection at the industrial estate, but they are afraid.”

He added, “The wage hike demanded in the threat letter is too much, and factory owners will have to bear a great loss. We are looking into whether to hike the wages or not.”

Amroli police inspector R P Solanki said, “We have assured all possible help to the delegates of Anjani industrial estate and even we will send out mobile patrolling teams to the area and we will also deploy police personnel there.”

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