The Court of Appeal today issued notices on the respondents including Minister of Labour returnable for May 5 in connection with the writ petition filed by 20 major plantation companies.

The petitioner-companies are seeking an order quashing the decision of the Wages Board to increase the daily wage of plantation workers to Rs. 1,000.

The Court of Appeal bench comprising Justice (President) Arjuna Obeysekera and Justice MayadunneCorea fixed the writ petition for argument on May 5. The respondent parties were directed to file their objections on or before April 27 while the petitioners were directed to file counter objections before May 4 if necessary.

The petitioners are; Agarapatana Plantations Limited, Balangoda Plantations PLC, Elpitiya Plantations PLC, Horana Plantations PLC, Hapugastenne Plantations PLC, Kahawatte Plantations PLC, Kegalle Plantations PLC, Kelani Valley Plantations PLC, KotagalaPlantations PLC, Madulsima Plantations PLC, Malwatte Valley Plantations PLC, MaskeliyaPlantations PLC, Natural Plantations Limited, Namunukula Plantations PLC, Talawakelle Tea Estates PLC, Udapussallawa Plantations PLC, WatawalaPlantations PLC, Hatton Plantations PLC, Bogawantalawa Plantations PLC and Lalan Rubbers (Pvt)  Ltd.

The petitioners had named Minister of Labor NimalSiripala de Silva, Chairman of Wage Board for tea, rubber growing and manufacturing trade PrabathChandrakeerthi and several others as respondents.

The petitioners feared that the plantation industry would have to face dire consequences if they implemented the increase of workers daily wage up to Rs 1,000.

The Gazette notification on increasing the daily wage of Estate Workers to Rs. 1000 was published on March 9. This increase comprises Rs.900 as the Minimum daily wage and Rs.100 Allowance.


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