AL govt always trying to ensure better life to tea workers


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday said the Awami League (AL) government has always been trying to ensure a better life to tea workers as she harvours special responsibility towards them as her father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman gave them citizenship.

“I have a separate responsibility to you (tea workers) as the Father of the Nation had given you the citizenship. I am always trying to perform the responsibilities accordingly,” she said while exchanging views with tea workers through a video conference from her official Ganabhaban residence here.

The Prime Minister told the tea workers, who joined the meeting from Moulvibazar, Habiganj, Sylhet and Chattagram through a video conference, that her government has always been trying to make sure that the tea workers could live a better life alongside blooming the tea industry since AL assumed power.

“Since, the Awami League assumed office, we have always been trying to resolve all the problems of the tea workers and to spread the tea industry (to other parts of the country),” she said, adding that they have started tea cultivation afresh in Panchagar.

In this connection, the Prime Minister said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had taken various measures for the flourishing of the industry and ensuring better life to the tea workers when he (Bangabandhu) was entrusted with the responsibilities of the chairman of the then tea board.

She said Bangabandhu had established headquarters of the tea board in Motijheel alongside taken measures to flourish the tea industry and gave the tea workers citizenship and voting rights as he had sympathy towards them.

Following the footsteps of the Father of the Nation, the Premier said she has always attached priorities to the wellbeing of the tea workers.

Referring to recent demonstrations of the tea workers, she said they had given a hike in their daily wages and other benefits so that they could live properly after holding talks with the tea gardens owners.

“We think that we can realise their (tea workers’) demands,” she said.

Earlier on Saturday last, the Prime Minister held a meeting with owners of tea gardens where the minimum daily wage for a tea worker was fixed at Tk 170.

Sheikh Hasina said she was truly very happy to get a scope to exchange views with the tea workers in person and shared her experiences with the tea workers while visiting tea gardens in Shrimangal.

The Prime Minister said the tea workers even came to meet her at the Ganabhaban with a gift.

She greeted the tea workers from the core of her heart as they gave her a gift with their hard-earned money, describing the gift as the most precious to her and said, “I am currently wearing the gift in my hand.”

The Premier said her father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had dedicated his entire life to ensure a better life for the commoners and the poor people.

“I am also trying to ensure that the people of Bangladesh would not have to suffer any pain. I am giving home to the homeless free of cost. We have taken measures to make sure no family will remain homeless,” she said.

The Premier said her government has been ensuring five basic needs: food, housing, clothing, accommodation and treatment in accordance with the constitution.

She said that the prices of food have increased excessively because of the ongoing Coronavisrus pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war and its impact has also been felt upon Bangladesh.

“I am trying my best to make sure the countrymen never suffer for food,” she said.

She said her government has been giving rice to one crore families at Tk 30 per kg from September 1 while pulse, oil and salt have been given to the masses at subsidized prices so they can live their lives properly.