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Cine workers can now avail free medical treatment

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Nov 4 � In a positive development, cine workers of Assam will now be able to avail free medical treatment facilities at government hospitals in the State.

It may be mentioned here that despite the existence of two Acts in India � the Cine Workers Welfare Fund Act-1981, and the Cine Workers Welfare Cess Act-1981, the cine workers of the State have not been able to get the benefits. As per the Acts, each producer of feature film has to deposit a cess fees for the welfare fund of cine workers, and in return for paying the cess fees, each and every cine workers as defined by the same Act can avail the facilities announced by the Labour Ministry of India. The facilities include free medical treatment for any fatal disease, educational loan, etc.

Film producers of the Assamese film industry have been paying the cess fees as per the Acts without fail but unfortunately, not even a single cine workers of Assam had been able to avail the benefits.

The decks were cleared for the State�s cine workers to avail the benefits after a filmmaker, Ashok Sarma, lodged formal complaint to the Union Labour Ministry on August 11, seeking the ministry�s intervention in the matter.

Talking to The Assam Tribune, Sarma said that in response to his complaint, the ministry intimated him that the cine workers of Assam could get the facilities as per welfare schemes from the Welfare Commissioner Office at Kolkatta.

�But the existing process was a cumbersome one, as the Welfare Commissioner Office told me that the cine workers could avail the facilities of free medical treatment from the Bidi workers� dispensary at Gauripur, Dhubri district. But I refused the offer, saying that it was impossible for a cine worker hailing from other areas of the State such as Guwahati or Tinsukia to avail the benefits in that manner,� Sarma said, adding that after his persuasions, the Welfare Commissioner Office told him that one could get the facilities at any government hospital provided the doctor-in-charge of the dispensary referred the case to the government hospital concerned.

�I then contacted Doctor B Bhatta at the Gauripur dispensary, and he said that he had received the documents concerned from Welfare Commissioner Office at Kolkata. Now any cine worker can avail the benefits by getting the matter referred from the Gauripur hospital,� Sarma said.

Expressing happiness over the development, Sarma said that there should be a Welfare Commissioner Office at Guwahati as well. �It is good news for Assam, as the cine workers will now be able to avail free treatment for fatal diseases like cancer, kidney failure, etc.,� Sarma said.

Asked why he refrained from approaching the State Government on the issue, Sarma said that had the Government been interested, those facilities would have been availed long back. �I did not feel like approaching the Assam Government in this regard,� he said.

Sarma said that he was assisted in his endeavour by a city-based journalist, Chandan Kumar Duara.

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— Dalai Lama(THIS IS STATIC)

Cine workers can now avail free medical treatment

GUWAHATI, Nov 4 � In a positive development, cine workers of Assam will now be able to avail free medical treatment facilities at government hospitals in the State.

It may be mentioned here that despite the existence of two Acts in India � the Cine Workers Welfare Fund Act-1981, and the Cine Workers Welfare Cess Act-1981, the cine workers of the State have not been able to get the benefits. As per the Acts, each producer of feature film has to deposit a cess fees for the welfare fund of cine workers, and in return for paying the cess fees, each and every cine workers as defined by the same Act can avail the facilities announced by the Labour Ministry of India. The facilities include free medical treatment for any fatal disease, educational loan, etc.

Film producers of the Assamese film industry have been paying the cess fees as per the Acts without fail but unfortunately, not even a single cine workers of Assam had been able to avail the benefits.

The decks were cleared for the State�s cine workers to avail the benefits after a filmmaker, Ashok Sarma, lodged formal complaint to the Union Labour Ministry on August 11, seeking the ministry�s intervention in the matter.

Talking to The Assam Tribune, Sarma said that in response to his complaint, the ministry intimated him that the cine workers of Assam could get the facilities as per welfare schemes from the Welfare Commissioner Office at Kolkatta.

�But the existing process was a cumbersome one, as the Welfare Commissioner Office told me that the cine workers could avail the facilities of free medical treatment from the Bidi workers� dispensary at Gauripur, Dhubri district. But I refused the offer, saying that it was impossible for a cine worker hailing from other areas of the State such as Guwahati or Tinsukia to avail the benefits in that manner,� Sarma said, adding that after his persuasions, the Welfare Commissioner Office told him that one could get the facilities at any government hospital provided the doctor-in-charge of the dispensary referred the case to the government hospital concerned.

�I then contacted Doctor B Bhatta at the Gauripur dispensary, and he said that he had received the documents concerned from Welfare Commissioner Office at Kolkata. Now any cine worker can avail the benefits by getting the matter referred from the Gauripur hospital,� Sarma said.

Expressing happiness over the development, Sarma said that there should be a Welfare Commissioner Office at Guwahati as well. �It is good news for Assam, as the cine workers will now be able to avail free treatment for fatal diseases like cancer, kidney failure, etc.,� Sarma said.

Asked why he refrained from approaching the State Government on the issue, Sarma said that had the Government been interested, those facilities would have been availed long back. �I did not feel like approaching the Assam Government in this regard,� he said.

Sarma said that he was assisted in his endeavour by a city-based journalist, Chandan Kumar Duara.

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— Dalai Lama(THIS IS STATIC)