By Devabrata Dutta
GUWAHATI: The Assam Government has offered a sum of Rs. 570 crore relief package to the employees of Hindustan Paper Corporation (HPC) owned two defunct paper mills of Nagaon and Cachar in a meeting held between the government and the representatives of two paper mills in Guwahati on Monday.
From the Assam government, Minister of Industry & Commerce Chandra Mohan Patowary and Minister of Water Resources and Jagiroad MLA Pijush Hazarika was present in the meeting.
“The government has put forward a proposal of Rs. 570 crore relief package in yesterday’s meeting. The agreement has not been made official yet as we will sit again today for discussion and how these funds are going to be utilised,” said Ananda Bordoiloi, President of Kagaz Nigam Karmi Union, Jagiroad.
According to a reliable source, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma will make an official announcement soon, in a day or two, regarding the same.
Though CM Sarma has asserted to solve this issue completely within two to three months. Eligible employees of two paper mills will be appointed in other departments as well.
The paper mill in Cachar ceased functioning in October 2015 while the Nagaon unit has been non-functioning since March 2017. Employees have been deprived of their due salaries since 2017 itself.
The liquidator of Hindustan Paper Corporation Limited (HPCL) Kuldeep Verma has served a notice to the employees of two defunct paper mills to vacate their official quarters within 15 days from September 3, to facilitate the sale of the physical assets of two units, or to face legal action otherwise.
On the other hand, the employees of two paper mills have denied vacating their official quarters without getting their due salaries of 56 months. They also termed Verma’s notice as illegal as NCLAT stated them as employees of two paper mills and hence they deserve the rights of employees.
Later, Minister Pijush Hazarika has asserted that the government is ready to pay the due salaries of the employees as per their demand as the government is dedicated to solving the issue at this time.
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