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Tea planters, govt look horns in Tripura

By Prabir sil

AGARTALA, Nov 20 � Strongly opposing the proposed Tripura Land Revenue and Land Reforms Bill (10th amendment), the Tripura Tea Association (TAI) on Wednesday threatened it would knock the door of the court if the government takes back land given to tea planters earlier.

Tea planters under the banner of TAI would not allow the government to take back allotted land under the Tripura Land Revenue and Land Reforms Bill 1960, said PK Sarkar, secretary of the TAI State unit at a press conference here today.

Under the proposed amendment Bill, no one could possess land measuring more than 7.2 hectares (45 Kani), sparking an uproar especially among tea planters.

Usually tea planters need a vast area of land to undertake plantation, cultivation, machine operation and tea manufacturing. In Tripura, most of the tea estates have land measuring 300-400 hectares.

�The government�s decision to put a ceiling on the ownership of land will be disastrous for the ailing tea industry in the State. This is totally unrealistic and a short-sighted move on the part of the government�, Sarkar said.

Sarkar, flanked by chairman of TAI Anjan Das and tea planter Shantibrata Chakraborty, said the TAI is seriously concerned at the way the government had proposed certain amendment in the Bill which is highly detrimental to the industry.

�The amendment Bill is introduced at a time when a sizeable number of gardens are found to be uneconomic due to continuous loss sustained by them. It will be disastrous for the industry which provides livelihood to around 30,000 families directly�, he pointed out.

Sarkar said, �The TAI will drag the issue to the court if the government goes ahead with the amendment bill. The land was given to different tea planters under specific law and it can�t be rolled back�.

Referring to the proposed Bill, Sarkar said it suggests plantation of coffee in the different tea estates. �But everybody knows, the climate and soil are not suitable for coffee plantation. In spite of the ground reality, the government is trying to force the tea planters to a bleak future which can�t be acceptable to us�, he said.

On the restriction of rubber plantation in the tea estate land, Sarkar said the TAI has been advocating for long to allow tea planters to go for alternative crop like rubber plantation. �Unfortunately, the government is reluctant to allow tea planters for alternative crop like rubber plantation leading to huge loss in the entire industry�, he added.

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Tea planters, govt look horns in Tripura

AGARTALA, Nov 20 � Strongly opposing the proposed Tripura Land Revenue and Land Reforms Bill (10th amendment), the Tripura Tea Association (TAI) on Wednesday threatened it would knock the door of the court if the government takes back land given to tea planters earlier.

Tea planters under the banner of TAI would not allow the government to take back allotted land under the Tripura Land Revenue and Land Reforms Bill 1960, said PK Sarkar, secretary of the TAI State unit at a press conference here today.

Under the proposed amendment Bill, no one could possess land measuring more than 7.2 hectares (45 Kani), sparking an uproar especially among tea planters.

Usually tea planters need a vast area of land to undertake plantation, cultivation, machine operation and tea manufacturing. In Tripura, most of the tea estates have land measuring 300-400 hectares.

�The government�s decision to put a ceiling on the ownership of land will be disastrous for the ailing tea industry in the State. This is totally unrealistic and a short-sighted move on the part of the government�, Sarkar said.

Sarkar, flanked by chairman of TAI Anjan Das and tea planter Shantibrata Chakraborty, said the TAI is seriously concerned at the way the government had proposed certain amendment in the Bill which is highly detrimental to the industry.

�The amendment Bill is introduced at a time when a sizeable number of gardens are found to be uneconomic due to continuous loss sustained by them. It will be disastrous for the industry which provides livelihood to around 30,000 families directly�, he pointed out.

Sarkar said, �The TAI will drag the issue to the court if the government goes ahead with the amendment bill. The land was given to different tea planters under specific law and it can�t be rolled back�.

Referring to the proposed Bill, Sarkar said it suggests plantation of coffee in the different tea estates. �But everybody knows, the climate and soil are not suitable for coffee plantation. In spite of the ground reality, the government is trying to force the tea planters to a bleak future which can�t be acceptable to us�, he said.

On the restriction of rubber plantation in the tea estate land, Sarkar said the TAI has been advocating for long to allow tea planters to go for alternative crop like rubber plantation. �Unfortunately, the government is reluctant to allow tea planters for alternative crop like rubber plantation leading to huge loss in the entire industry�, he added.

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