Tea industry rues absence of permanent Tea Board chairman

Kolkata, Aug 18 (PTI) Indian Tea Association has said theindustry is suffering due to absence of a permanent chairmanof the Tea Board for the last three years. "There is no permanent chairman of Tea Board since thelast three years after MGVK Bhanu. This is seriously affectingthe functioning of the tea industry," a senior official of theIndian Tea Association (ITA) told PTI. The official said the role of the chairman is to assistthe industry in various issues and then to take it up with thegovernment. "When there was a permanent incumbent, the industry wasable to knock at the door of the chairman at ease and get theissues redressed," the official said. But in the absence of a permanent chairman, things weregetting delayed inordinately as exchanges had to be donebetween Kolkata and Delhi. Presently, the joint secretary with the commerce ministry,Santosh Sarangi, is officiating as chairman of the Tea Board. Past chairman of ITA, who is the CEO & MD of GoodrickeGroup, A N Singh said the industry was getting affected verymuch due to the absence of a permanent chairman. "There is a lot of things which need to be consulted onalmost on a regular basis. We don’t know whom to approach,"Singh said. "The prices are falling, there is no interaction with theboard on this important issue. It is believed that the post ofthe chairman is being downgraded to that of a deputy chairman,which is also an IAS officer," he added. PTI DC MDABK

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