Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today announced bonus and other benefits amounting to Rs 92.37 cr for Kendu Leaf pluckers and employees of Kendu Leaf Development Board.
Of the entire package, the bonus amount is Rs 59.78 cr. The CM has also enhanced the ex-gratia payment from Rs one lakh to 2 lakh in case of death and permanent disability of the workers. This announcement was done by the Odisha CM through video conferencing on Monday.
In 2014, the state government took a historic decision to provide a certain percentage of the proceeds of Kendu leaf trade to the pluckers and binders.
During Covid pandemic, over 60 lakh mandays were created. This has benefited over 7 lakh Kendu Leaf Pluckers, 18223 binders and 16533 part-time workers.
Nearly Rs 250 cr were credited to the accounts of kendu leaf workers through direct benefit transfer.
The video conferencing was attended by forest and environment minister Bikram Keshari Arukh and steel and mines minister Prafulla Kumar Mallick.
Principal Chief Conservator of Forests(KL) Prabhakar Behera, Additional chief secretary, forest Dr Mona Sharma, Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra and 5T Secretary V K Pandian also attended the programme.