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25 Apr 2018

Accountabilitea, India

India: Deaths of Indian tea estates under the World Bank's watch

"Nine Years of Neglect: Deaths of Indian Tea Estates under the World Bank's Watch", 27 April 2018

[T]wo local groups, Promotion and Advancement of Justice, Harmoney and Rights Adivasis (PAJHRA) and People's Action for Development (PAD), from Assam, India sent a letter to the World Bank Group’s independent complaint office, the Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO), highlighting that the Bank’s neglect over the last nine years has contributed to deaths and injuries on tea plantations in the North-East of the country... [T]he World Bank invested in Amalgamated Plantations Private Limited (APPL)...owned by the Tata Group...[There are] stories of tea workers...who have died following work-related accidents, prolonged exposure to hazardous pesticides and lack of adequate medical care...

[The letter] documents seven...stories of death and injury by neglect in the last two years... [The World] Bank chose to disagree with many of the CAO’s findings [which was released in November 2016 showing failure to remedy low wages, restricted freedom of association, poor housing and sanitation and dangerous exposure to pesticides], and has done little to address the problems...