The ongoing unrest over NRC and CAB has made uncertain the availability of the additional bakery workers to the different bakeries in Hooghly. The bakery industry in the district is well-known for producing cakes during the Christmas. Mouth-watering baked items are much in demand in the festival time. To meet the growing demand for Christmas cakes, other baked items, additional workers are employed and most of them come from different districts of the state.
The district is well known for its thriving bakery industry. The district bakeries also meet the demand of daily bread and other everyday baked items of adjacent districts. Owners of most of the bakeries in the district are concentrated at Bandel, Triveni , Chapdany, Chinsurah, Chandannagar, Bhadreswar, Serampore and Rishra. The preparations to meet the demand of Christmas cakes usually start from November. Additional bakery workers are from Howrah, Murshidabad and Burdwan.
Most of them belong to the minority community. Rinku Mansuri and other bakery workers said: “In the hope of some extra income, every year in the month of November, we get employed in the different bakeries of the district.” There is a huge demand for the quality cakes baked in the different bakeries of the district. At the end of the Christmas and new year, we return home with a good income but the sudden turmoil on the account of NRC and CAB has made us anxious about the safety of our families.
We are unable to concentrate on the cake preparation process. We are all set to leave for our home soon after the first lot of the cake is baked out. It is true that without the help of additional hands, the bakeries of the district cannot meet the huge demand of cakes during the Christmas festive season. If the overall unrest on account of NRC and CAB does not clam down within a couple of days, we have to rush to our homes.”
Narul Sarkar one of the bakery owner said: “The NRC and CAB issue have completely destroyed the peace of the country. People are panicked.” Protest against the NRC and CAB is taking an ugly turn. Most of the additional bakery workers are from minority community. They fear threat to their family members at home. They are ready to leave the bakery work half done and rush to their homes. Moreover, fearing violence, many of them have not come.”