Strike stocks up for auction

Strike stocks up for auction
Darjeeling: The Darjeeling district administration has decided to auction 10,000 quintals of flour spoilt because it could not be distributed during last year's 104-day statehood agitation.
The unsold stock - likely be find buyers among glue and gum makers - is yet another example of the losses the people had to face during the long strike.
Joyoshi Das Gupta, the Darjeeling DM, said: "The atta and maida could not be distributed because of the violence from June to September. This is a loss for the people."
The 9687.33 quintals of atta and 93.50 quintals of maida, lying with 13 distributors in Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong, will be auctioned on April 14.
Even though the items are spoilt, the administration is hoping that people having licence of non-edible industries will participate in the auction. The damaged items come into use in making (adhesive) gums.

The minimum floor price of the item has been kept at Rs 591.34 per quintal. However, the cost of loading and unloading of the damaged item has to be borne by the highest bidder in the auction.
Even though the district administration had tried to keep ration shops open during the strike period, the dealers could not keep the shops open regularly.
However, after normality returned to the hills, the state government did compensate the foodgrain that could not be distributed to the public during the strike. "From December, the entire foodgrain that could not be given to the people was compensated by the government. Nevertheless, the strike was a loss for the common people," said Das Gupta.
The two main economic mainstays of the hills, tea and tourism, were also affected. Even though the state government provided its employees with salaries even during the strike period, the tea garden workers received no wages during the strike period as there was no manufacture and sell of Darjeeling tea. Tea production fell almost 70 per cent.
The garden owners could not pay the bonus at one go and 50 percent of the bonus amount was cleared only in March this year. Tourism, education and other sectors in the hills had also been hit hard during the strike period, which ultimately bore no fruit.

The Telegraph

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