An employee of a defunct paper mill, earlier owned by Hindustan Paper Corporation (HPC), in Assam's Cachar district died due to illness after failing to pay for his treatment, its union said on Wednesday.
With his death, the death toll of the paper mill employees reached 103. While the Cachar unit stopped functioning in October 2015, the Nagaon mill in Jagiroad became defunct in March 2017.
Rajendra Kumar i, a native of Cuttack in Odisha, died on Monday at the age of 58, Joint Action Committee of Recognised Union (JACRU) of Nagaon and Cachar Paper Mills said.
He was suffering from kidney-related ailments but could not afford treatment due to financial crisis owing to non-payment of salary, it claimed.
This is the 18th death since the Himanta Biswa Sarma government came into power in May last year, the JACRU said.
The Assam government on March 28 announced that it has acquired the two defunct paper mills of HPC for Rs 375 crore. The Assam government though has agreed to a relief package for the rescue of the workers, funds are yet to be released, JACRU said. No salary has been paid to the staff of Cachar and Nagaon units since January and March of 2017, respectively.