The unit located near Tagarapuvalasa closed in 2009. Owing to the prolonged closure, several workers moved to Vizianagaram, Nellimarla, Srikakulam and other places in search of jobs in jute mills there.

Chittivalasa Jute Mills Workers’ Union (CJMWU) has decided to knock at the doors of the Supreme Court to seek a direction for immediate reopening of the unit located near Tagarapuvalasa.

The mill, which employed 2,800 permanent, 800 badli and 2,000 apprentice workers at the time of closure, was shut down by the Kolkata-based management on April 20, 2009. More than five years have passed, but the lockout, imposed under the pretext of deplorable power position, continues despite orders by the labour court and the government. “The old management which entered into an agreement to sell it off has run into rough weather over the modalities for change of ownership. The issue has become sub judice. Hence, we will bring pressure on the new government in Andhra Pradesh to seek a direction from the Apex Court,” INTUC leader and CJMWU president K.K. Varahala Raju told The Hindu on Thursday.

He said the union also decided to file an affidavit in the court seeking a direction to the management not to delay the reopening on humanitarian point of view.

Owing to the prolonged closure, several workers moved to Vizianagaram, Nellimarla, Srikakulam and other places in search of jobs in jute mills there. Others have been working as labour to eke out a living.

Oldest mill

The union had signed an agreement with the management in 2011 to extend full cooperation for revival of the mill, one of the oldest composite mills in the State built during British Raj with a capacity of 100 tonnes a day. Those who have already attained superannuation will be given an option to work.

“Life has become very difficult for even the permanent workers. Though we stay in old quarters of the mill, some of the old workers have opted to work as security guards and watchmen in Vizag,” Narsinga Rao, a permanent worker of the mill, said.

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