DIBRUGARH, Oct 2 - As part of the State Government�s effort to check maternal and infant mortality rate and to improve the overall health condition of workers and their dependants in tea plantations, two nutrition shops (Bagan Bazar) were inaugurated at the Annandabari Tea Estate and Jutlibari Tea Estate under the Tengakhat development block.
�Maternal and infant mortality rates have been alarmingly high in the tea gardens due to malnutrition and other factors. Tea garden workers and their dependants do not have access to nutritious food. The nutrition shops have been set up to provide essential nutrition at nominal costs to the people of the plantation areas,� Dr Hemadri Konch, State Project Manager, National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM), said.
The establishment of these nutrition shops has been initiated within the tea garden premises by the NRLM Society in collaboration with the Tea Tribes Welfare Department, Food and Civil Supplies Department and Assam Gramin Vikash Bank and in coordination with tea garden associations like ABITA, BCP, Tea Association of India, NETA, ATPA, ATC, etc. Altogether 25 such shops were set up in different parts of the State today.
Both the nutrition shops were inaugurated by local MLA Amiya Gogoi in the presence of Deputy Commissioner MS Manivannan, Additional Deputy Commissioner and in-charge of the District Rural and Development Agency (DRDA), Reena Mech, Regional Manager of the Assam Gramin Vikash Bank, Dibrugarh Region, Rukunuddin Ahmed, David Ekka, Block Project Manager, NRLM, Tengakhat, and officials from the ABITA and tea estate managers of the area.
The nutrition shops, to be run by women self-help groups, stock nutritious food like Horlicks, milk, soya bean, lentils, green leafy vegetables and other grocery and sanitary items.
At the Annandabari Tea Estate, the shop has been allotted to Nabajyoti SHG, while at the Jutlibari Tea Estate, Samanay SHG will run the shop. The Assam Gramin Vikash Bank has provided Rs 3 lakh each to the SHG as working capital for the shops. The SHGs have also been provided financial assistance for the development and renovation of the existing infrastructure.