India

Tea Workers Fight for Minimum Wage

Photo credit: Aravindan Ganesan

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi often refers to himself as “Chaiwala” — the term for a tea-seller on the Indian subcontinent.  His father sold tea at a stall near Vadnagar railway station and when he was young, Modi too would help out. But according to the ACMS, the largest tea workers’ body in Assam province, Modi still hasn’t fulfilled his promise of a minimum wage for tea workers. According to the ACMS, Modi’s BJP government promised to increase the daily wage of workers on tea estates to Rs 350 ($4.95) per day. India’s The Economic Times says tea garden workers in Brahmaputra Valley currently earn Rs. 167 ($2.36) per day, while their colleagues in Barak Valley earn Rs. 145 ($2.05) per day.

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