Protest at IMFA’s chromite mine called off; operations to resume from tomorrow

Jajpur/Bhubaneswar: The labour union protest at two mines of Indian Metals & Ferro Alloys Ltd (IMFA) in Jajpur has been called off following consensus over the demands of labourers.

Sources said a meeting was held between the labour union and IMFA authorities and the union has decided to allow resumption of mining operations from tomorrow.

The livelihood of nearly 1,600 labourers was affected owing to the suspension of mining operations at IMFA’s two mines at Mahagiri and Sukinda due to labour union protest following a mishap in which some labourers were injured.

Though a meeting between the company officials and labour union president Pritiranjan Ghadai, who is also the local MLA of BJD, was held yesterday, it failed to resolve the deadlock.

Ghadai on the other hand categorically announced that the agitation would continue till the injured labourers are discharged from the hospital. However, he tactfully evaded when asked about political links behind the protests.

It is pertinent to mention here that two labourers sustained minor injuries while another was seriously injured after being trapped in a landslide while working in the underground mines on October 31.

Following the incident, the labourers under the aegis of Sukinda Region Chromite Mines Mazdoor Sangh resorted to protests demanding proper air ventilation and drinking water facilities inside the underground mines.

The IMFA (Mining) authorities had informed that the injured labourers are being treated at a private hospital in Bhubaneswar and the company is taking all steps as per the guidelines to prevent any such mishaps in future.