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In poll bound Assam Himanta announces sop for tea workers

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Guwahati, Feb 6: Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said a notification for revision of wages for those engaged in tea estates will be out in within  10 days.

Addressing a gathering in Guwahati, Sarma said, “In next 10 days there will be a notification which will revise the wages of the tea workers”. The tea garden workers in Brahmaputra valley in Assam get daily wage of Rs. 167 per day while the tea garden workers in Barak Valley are getting a wage of Rs. 145 per day.

Assam has over 10 lakh tea workers in organised sector working in 850 tea estates.

Assam roughly produces 55 percent of India’s tea. Tea tribe community are determining votes in 30 to 35 assembly seats.  The bilateral wage agreement between workers’ union and industry expired long time ago. However, the BJP led government has changed the same and has formed a committee to revise the minimum wages.

Sarma said, “Bank accounts of tea garden workers  were opened during demonetisation and in two instalments Rs 5,000 was transferred. Today we have sent Rs 3000 in 8 lakh bank accounts. State government has spent close to Rs 224 Crore for the third tranche,”.

He added that Tea garden people are part and parcel of Assam.

“These people are good Assamese though militant leader Paresh Baruah often call them non-Assamese,” Sarma said.

Sarma said Assam’s identify in internationally id associated with tea. “Despite being in power for so long Congress party failed to open bank accounts of the tea workers,” he said.

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