GUWAHATI: Assam government has once again decided to hike the daily wage of the tea garden workers by Rs 27 on Tuesday.
With this, the new daily wage of tea workers in Brahmaputra valley would be Rs 232 and Rs 210 in Barak valley respectively.
Taking to the micro-blogging site Twitter, Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma wrote, "Happy to share that in a meeting with tea associations, it was decided to hike the workers' wage by ₹27, thus raising their daily wage to ₹232 & ₹210 in Brahmaputra Valley & Barak Valley respectively. Also assured to raise Govt subsidy for orthodox tea from ₹7 to ₹10 per kg."
Meanwhile, the government subsidy for orthodox tea has also gone up from Rs 7 to Rs 10 per kg.
Earlier, the Assam Government decided to lease out 12 of the 15 tea gardens of the Assam Tea Corporation Limited (ATCL), a State-owned PSU which has been incurring heavy losses for many years. The government has already floated the lease tender.
The 15 tea gardens under ATCL have been incurring losses amounting to crores of rupees every year. The liabilities of these tea gardens, including PF and gratuity of the employees and labourers, have piled up over the years and now stand at several crores of rupees. Several attempts had been made by the government to revamp the tea gardens but all such attempts proved unsuccessful. Finally, the government has decided to lease out 12 tea gardens for the long term. The government will retain the ownership rights of the tea gardens, only the management will be leased out.
The 12 tea gardens to be leased out are Amluckie, Deejuvalley, Loongssong, Sycotta, Naginijan, Messamara, Rungamatty, Negheriting, Rajabarie, Deepling, Longai and Ishabheel tea gardens. Out of the remaining three tea gardens, Bholaguri tea garden in the Biswanath Charliali district and Cinnamara in the Jorhat district will be developed as heritage properties while Bidyanagar tea garden in Barak Valley will continue functioning.