Agri Business

Tea production permitted in the Nilgiris subject to Covid-19 norms

P S SUNDAR Coonoor | Updated on March 30, 2020

The Nilgiris district Collector Innocent Divya has permitted the ‘processing, production of tea and other associated activities’ subject to strict compliance of the norms and Covid-19 precautionary measures mentioned in her order.

On Sunday, she issued an order in this regard. She said that while the district is under Section 144 of Code of Criminal Procedure as a precautionary step in the context of Covid-19, few tea factories have represented to reopen and start functioning since tea comes under the exempted category.

She said that the Agricultural Production Commissioner of State Government has clarified that tea cultivation and all associated activities are permitted because tea cultivation is part of agricultural activity which is permitted under notification issued by Government of India.

Further it has been clarified that tea is a food item and an essential commodity and hence manufacture and production of tea can be undertaken subject to general restrictions and safety measures. Hence, she has now permitted the tea production subject a list of norms.

Per the order, minimum number of workers is to be employed and their individual consent is to be obtained. Adequate protective gears must be provided and the workers’ complete safety must be ensured. These workers must be medically checked before starting the work.

Social distancing and hand washing must be ensured. Managements should do disinfectant spraying in the labour lines to ensure hygiene and sanitation. There must be adequate sanitising points for workers from the point of entry to departure.

Factories should furnish list of transport and details of workers to obtain necessary curfew passes and exemption permits from the district administration.

There will be surprise visit by the officials to ensure that these guidelines are followed scrupulously. “Any lapse in complying with these will be viewed seriously and will lead to closure of operations,” the order warns.

Published on March 30, 2020

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