A tea worker named Sajal Das died when a hill collapsed while cutting the hilly soil in Hathazari Udalia tea garden of Chittagong. Three others were injured in the incident. The family alleged that the body was handed over without an autopsy.
Yesterday (Friday) at around 12 noon, 4 juvenile workers went to cut hills in Kalapani Tila area of Udalia tea plantation west of Farhadabad UP on the instructions of the manager. The workers risked cutting the 30-35 feet high mountain and were crushed by the landslide.
Sajal Das (16) died on the spot. He is the only child of deceased Biswajit Das of Kalapani area. Vijay Roy (17), Chandan Dash (16), Johnny Dash (16) were seriously injured and sent to Chittagong Medical College Hospital for better treatment.
Confirming the incident, Assistant Sub-Inspector Mainuddin of Udalia Tea Garden Beat Police said that Sajal’s body was taken away without post-mortem. I hear that 15-20 thousand rupees have been given by the owner for the burial.
Sajal’s mother Joba Dash said, Manager Jahangir has eaten my son. Even though it was dangerous, he sent me to cut the mountain and emptied my chest.
The workers said Jahangir was accused of encroaching hill land and cutting down trees of hill forests to sell wood while in charge of Halda Valley Tea Estate in Fatikchari. The case against him for occupying the hill is also under trial.
Regarding the complaint, Jahangir Alam said that a worker died in the landslide. We paid some expenses for his cremation. Labor representatives will look at what fines come under the Labor Act. Union president Abez Das and general secretary Vijay Das took away Sajal’s body without post-mortem.
Assistant Director of Chittagong Environment Department Ashraf Uddin said, I heard that a worker died in a landslide while cutting hills in Udalia tea plantation in violation of environmental laws. Noor Hasan Sajib, the officer in charge of Chittagong North, will be informed to investigate and take action.