Chakka Jam: Drivers stage road blockade at Siliguri’s Naya Bazaar

Siliguri, 04th October: Naya Bazaar of Siliguri city is the biggest food market of North Bengal. Food items are exported from here to North East as well as the hills and Sikkim. Not only this, the livelihood of hundreds of families depend on this very market.

Supporting the demand for hike in wages, drivers of freight vehicles staged a road blockade since Monday morning. Due to the ‘Chakka Jam’, work of freight came to a standstill in the Naya Market and a long line of goods laden vehicles was seen in the market. The labourers demanded the mandi owners increase their wages by Re 01 and alleged that they have appealed for the same several times but to no avail. Hence, they are protesting by stopping all work in the market.

Driver Manranjan Kumar said that the wages of the labourers have not been increased for the last four years. Apparently, the labourers get Rs 04 for each bag and Rs 16 for a quintal. Kumar added that with the passage of time, their wages should be increased.

As per the information, the Siliguri Merchant Association has been notified regarding their demands many times, but no address has been allegedly made to date. The labourers warned of continuing their agitation till their demands are met.

Another protester, Santosh Kumar said that due to rising inflation, it is becoming very difficult for them to look after their family in old wages. “The prices of everything are increasing. But our wages are not,” he added.

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