This Sunday, the Communist Party of India asked the Himachal Pradesh government to take concrete steps to bring in Nepalese laborers on time for the apple season. CPI leader Sanjay Chauhan said orchardists are worried due to shortage of labour. “If labour is not arranged on time then it will become difficult for orchardists to take their produce to fruit markets thereby causing huge losses.”
“Most apple orchards are away from roads, therefore laborers have to carry apple boxes on their backs. They are also required to load and unload apple boxes from the vehicles. Due to Covid-19 and other issues with Nepal, laborers have not been able to come to the state this year. Up until now, the state government has also not taken any concrete step in this direction.”
Sanjay Chauhan said the apple season has started in the state and will pick up pace in lower and middle hills within the next two weeks but due to the pandemic, there is a shortage of labourers, packaging materials and other essential resources. Besides, truck owners and other commercial vehicles have also hiked transportation charges by 20% due to a rise in prices of petrol and diesel.