Guwahati: An association of tea planters on Friday urged the disaster management authority in Assam to grant permission to vehicles carrying green leaves to ply within the curfew hours and exempt them from the odd-even vehicular formula imposed amid a raging second wave of COVID-19 in the state.

North Eastern Tea Association wrote to Assam State Disaster Management Authority CEO Gyanendra Tripathi, requesting him to allow vehicles laden with green leaves to operate up to 8 pm daily as the commodity is perishable and needs to be processed within a certain period of time after harvesting.

Bidyananda Barkakoty, the adviser of the tea producers’ association, said more than 50 per cent of green leaves are produced by small growers, and the perishable leaves are transported to factories for processing.

Noting that the manufacturing of tea is a continuous process, Barkakoty said many staffers at factories are facing hardship to move from home to office or vice versa during the curfew hours.

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NETA appealed to the disaster management authority to take appropriate measures according to its May 13 order.

The order stated that movement of persons related to “manufacturing units of essential commodities” and “production facilities which require continuous process” are exempted from the purview of restriction on movement between 2 pm to 5 am and the odd-even vehicular regulation, he said.



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