Committee to be formed to reopen closed tea gardens
Kolkata, Jul 28 (UNI) With an objective to reopen 11 closed tea gardens in the state, the Centre has joined hands with the West Bengal government to set up a committee which will hand over the ownership of the closed tea gardens.
''The committee will evaluate the proposals given by the existing owners of these gardens and rope in new ones for the revival of the gardens,'' Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Jairam Ramesh told mediapersons here today.
The existing owners would be given 30 days, starting from July 30, to bring in new buyers.
''Otherwise the Tea Board and the Centre, under Section 16-E of the Tea Board Act, would hand over the closed gardens to a new management,'' Mr Ramesh said.
Section 16-E of the Act is applicable to the gardens, which remained closed for more than three months.
''According to our study all the closed gardens of Bengal were closed for more than five years,'' he added.
The committee comprises four officials of the state government, including principal secretary of state commerce and industry department Sabyasachi Sen besides, the finance secretary and the land reforms commissioner.
The committee would be chaired by a Central government nominee.
Tea Board Chairman Basudeb Banerjee would also be a part of the committee.