Rs 92.37 cr bonus, financial aid announced for kendu leaf pluckers in Odisha

Bhubaneswar: Bringing cheers to kendu leaf pluckers and other workers in Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today announced Rs 92.37 crore bonus and other financial assistance for them.
During a meeting of the Kendu Leaf Development Board chaired by the Chief Minister through video conference here, Rs 59.78 crore bonus was announced.

An official said the board sanctioned Rs 92.37 crore towards bonus and other assistance for pluckers, binding workers and temporary employees and infrastructure development.

Also, the Chief Minister hiked the ex-gratia for workers associated with kendu leaf plucking from Rs 1 lakh each to Rs 2 lakh in case of death or complete disability.

During the pandemic situation, the Kendu Leaf Development Board created more than 60 lakh work days. As many as 7,54,631 kendu leaf pluckers, 18,223 binding workers and 16,533 temporary employees were benefitted with the move.

The official further said a total of Rs 250 crore was transferred to the bank accounts of beneficiaries under the DBT scheme in the 2020 crop season.

Among others, Ministers Bikram Keshari Arukha and Prafulla Kumar Mallick, Chief Secretary Suresh Mohapatra, 5T Secretary VK Pandian and senior officials of the Forest and Environment Department were present in the meeting.

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