October 15, 2018
Coimbatore : Tamil Nadu Principal Secretary, Labour and Employment, Sunil Paliwal today assured planters that their problems would be taken up with the Chief Secretary. This would include the crucial regular meetings of the coordination committee constituted to discuss the sector.
He was responding to the request made by planters at the 65th annual conference of Planters Association of Tamil Nadu that the committee, comprising secretaries of labour, forest and revenue departments, was to facilitate discussion on issues affecting the industry.
Though a couple of meetings of this committee were conducted initially, no such meetings had happened for several years now, they said.
Paliwal said he would meet the Chief Secretary immediately and request her to activate the committee and also include more principal secretaries of various departments in it.
He said he would try to come out with a roadmap for the sector and would take up the demand to allow the use a portion of their plantation lands for cultivation of non-plantation crops like vanilla and herbs like in Kerala.
He also promised to take up demands, including professional tax and property tax and asked the planters to coordinate more with the agricultural department.
Earlier, association vice-chairman Sakher Nagarajan said Tamil Nadu was a significant plantation player with a combined planted area of 1.41 lakh hectares, with 1.2 lakh growers and 2 lakh workers.
However, the sector was facing various problems like glaring mismatch between the cost of production and price realisation.