After Arunachal woman dies, family alleges harassment at workplace
Itanagar: The family members of Tadu Obey, the deputy manager of Arunachal Pradesh Consumer's Cooperative Federation Limited (APCCFL) who “died of stroke due to hypertension” on June 26, have alleged that “their kin died after being mentally harassed by the federation’s managing director”.
“My sister (Obey) who was working with the APCCFL for the past 30 years went unconscious at the managing director’s chamber on the afternoon of June 26. She was taken to the Tomo Riba Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (TRIHMS) in Naharlagun, however, she breathed her last at the hospital around 5 pm,” Tadu Tamin, the brother of the deceased, said.
Tamin said, “My sister died after being mentally harassed by the managing director.”
“My sister died because of grave mental harassment which she was facing at her workplace. The reason for her sudden demise was the meeting that she had attended with the managing director in his cabin on June 26,” Tamin said.
He said, “Before her sudden demise, Obey had often told them about the injustice and mental harassment she and other employees were facing at the workplace from the federation’s management.”
“On June 1, my sister, along with seven other employees of the APCCFL, were directed by the management to submit an application for Voluntary Retirement from Service (VRS) by June 30 failing to which the federation had cautioned of necessary action against them. My sister received the notice on June 8 due to which she was in extreme mental agony and trauma,” he said.
Tamin said: “Obey had on June 9 approached the managing director to discuss the notice, however, there was no interest or concern shown for the latter’s end."
She then submitted a representation on June 23 but there has been no response, Tamin added.
"We have found a couple of diaries of my sister where she has written about the problems she had been facing in her office. She has even named the incumbent managing director for the same in her personal diary,” he said.
Following Obey’s death, Tamin said the family member also tried to take the matter to the police.
"We went to the Naharlagun Police station but the police also did not help us. They were not even ready to register our FIR. A healthy woman died due to mental harassment at her workplace and the police are not at all ready to listen to our grievances. We feel so helpless,” said Tamin.
As per the family members, 50-year-old Obey, who was working with APCCFL for the past 30 years, was initially appointed as a Helper (Grade-IV) in the year 1990. Her first promotion came in the year 1993 when she was promoted as a junior sales assistant. She was then promoted to the position of senior sales assistant in the year 1999 and she was also awarded a gold medal by the federation for her meritorious services in the same year.
Obey received her 3rd promotion as a deputy manager in the year 2012.
Another woman employee of APCCFL, Koya Nasi, who has been associated with the federation for the last seven years as a peon, said: “I and two other employees were just asked to leave. When I asked for the reason, the managing director said the federation cannot pay our salaries.”
Nasi alleged that four new employees were, however, recruited recently by the managing director and all of them are his family members and that of the federation’s chairman.
One Marpi Ruyi, who is working with the federation as a junior sales assistant for almost a decade, also alleged the managing director of harassing his employees.
“Whenever, we raised our voices for something wrong, he (MD) would say that the office is under him and he can do anything with it," Ruyi said.
Naharlagun Police station officer-in-charge, K Yangfo, when asked about the reason for not registering the case, said that the matter is under inquiry.
Capital Complex superintendent of police Tumme Amo said that he is unaware of the case and no one from the family of the deceased has approached him for help.
APCCFL managing director Birik Bole termed the allegations as baseless and false.
Bole said, “The decision to send the VRS notice was made by the board of directors.”
"The notice was for those employees who may be planning to start their own ventures. I never told them that the VRS was compulsory," he said.