Monday, 30th October 2017

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Tea tourism policy lacks clarity, says Bista

Bista criticised the state government for not allocating funds for the civic board

By Our Correspondent in Siliguri
  • Published 9.02.20, 12:54 AM
  • Updated 9.02.20, 12:54 AM
  • a min read
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Bista during the inauguration of the new building in Siliguri on Saturday Telegraph picture

Darjeeling MP Raju Bista has said the “tea tourism policy” announced by the Bengal government recently lacked clarity and was drafted without consulting the stakeholders of the industry.

“The decision to use tea garden’s land for tourism has no clarity as it was taken without considering the views of the stakeholders. There is no clarity on the policy on issues like how the land would be used and investment be made, and if the respective tea garden faces closure, what the future of the project would be. Apart from that, I think such proposals have hardly any viability without involving representatives of the Tea Board and the people,” the BJP MP said in Siliguri on Saturday.

He was here to inaugurate the new building of the Siliguri Tea Traders’ Association which has 260 members. The association said a tea testing centre would also come up at the building.

Bista said he was concerned about the state of affairs in the tea industry in north Bengal and was keeping in touch with all concerned at the central government for the development of the sector. “I have spoken to the representatives of the planters’ association. They have submitted to me some proposals and I am looking into them. There are many issues like improvement in the quality of tea, price, minimum wages of workers and their social security. I am trying to submit their proposal to the ministry concerned for necessary steps,” the MP said.

When journalists asked him about the prospects of BJP in the elections to the Siliguri Municipal Corporation, Bista criticised the state government for not allocating funds for the civic board.

“The residents of Siliguri have suffered many problems. There is water-logging because of poor drainage system. Traffic problem is not yet solved. The state government is not providing funds as Trinamul is not in power at the civic body. We will contest the ensuing civic poll and get majority to fulfil the aspiration of the residents here,” the MP said.