How the Tea Bill erodes tea plantation workers’ historical fight for rights

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The Centre's Department of Commerce has proposed to replace the Tea Act 1953 with Tea (Promotion and Development) Bill 2022. The Department of Commerce is seeking public comments on the draft Bill till March 9th – the date was extended from 21st January. While the government says that the Bill seeks to modernise the Tea laws and remove parts that have become redundant, trade unions say that the new Bill makes tea estate workers more vulnerable than before.

On this episode of The Suno India Show, our reporter Suryatapa Mukherjee speaks to Virginius Xaxa, a visiting Professor at the Institute for Human Development, New Delhi. Xaxa grew up on a tea estate himself and has written extensively on labour rights and tribal rights in the country. They discuss the history of tea estates, workers’ rights and Tea Bill 2022.

Draft Tea Promotion and Development Bill 2022 Revised.pdf
Tea Plantation Workers | Centre for Communication and Education.

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