Alipurduar: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday urged the Centre to take an initiative to pay wages to workers of the seven tea gardens which were taken over by it and said her government was trying to formulate a policy regarding six other closed tea estates.
“There are six tea gardens which are closed for a long time. We are trying to formulate a policy. Wherever possible the state government will take over them and then go for their auction”, she told reporters after an administrative meeting here.
She noted that the workers of the tea gardens which were taken over by the Centre were in a “peculiar condition” and were not getting their wages. “I request the Centre to take initiative immediately so that those workers get their wages and benefits,” she said. The state government is providing those workers with rice and electricity and looking after their health, she said.
The central government early this year had asked the Tea Board to take over the management of the seven tea gardens owned by Duncan Industries in view of their deteriorating condition. Banerjee lauded the ongoing development work in the newly-created Alipurduar district.