Udhagamandalam: A plea to continue the Small Tea Growers Protection Scheme introduced by the previous AIADMK regime has been made by the Tamil Nadu Janata Dal (S).
In a memorandum to the Chief Minister, M. Karunanidhi, the State Secretary of the party, H.T. Bojan, pointed out that on account of the prolonged crisis in the tea industry, thousands of small tea growers were finding it difficult to make ends meet. By way of providing temporary relief, the previous Government had implemented the protection scheme under which subsidy was given to the small tea growers.
A promise had also been made by the then Government that the scheme would continue until the produce of the small tea growers fetched remunerative prices.
However, the DMK Minister in-charge of the Nilgiris, K. Ramachandran, had stated recently that the Government would try to get a floor price for tea and it was not for implementing subsidy schemes.
Urging the Government to implement the subsidy scheme until the prices improved, Mr. Bojan said that if help was not provided, the Janata Dal (S) would be forced to take to the streets along with the growers.
He also appealed to the Chief Minister to use his good offices with the Centre to reduce the prices of petrol and diesel.