GUWAHATI, June 22 – Vice president of the All Assam Small Tea Growers’ Association (AASTGA) Dinesh Sarma has been unanimously appointed Vice-Chairman of the Tea Board of India at its meeting held at Kumarakom, Kerala today. Sarma is also the senior vice president of the Confederation of Indian Small Tea Growers’ Associations (CISTA). This is for the first time that a representative of the small tea growers has been elevated to such a high post in the Tea Board.
Talking to The Assam Tribune over phone from Kumarakom, Sarma described his appointment as a big achievement for the small tea growers of the country. The small tea growers are now recognised by the Tea Board, which was earlier meant for the corporate sector, he said.
He further maintained that Assam also has something to take pride in this development.
Sarma said that small tea growers’ sector would remain his priority. It needs mention here that Sarma was secretary of the Doomdooma Local Committee of the AASTGA for about 15 years. He held the post of president of the Tinsukia District Committee of the AASTGA for around six years and he has been holding the post of vice-president of the AASTGA for the third consecutive term now.
AASTGA president Ashwini Baruah described the event as a big one for the small tea growers of the country and expressed the hope that Sarma would now be able to raise the issues concerning the small tea growers effectively in the Tea Board.
AASTGA general secretary Karuna Mahanta also hailed the development as a very positive one.