Tea Plantations in Bihar ? This phrase still get surprised eyebrows from the public at large, who are so used to have seen tea being grown in hilly terrains of Assam, Darjeeling & Nilgiris.
Well, there was a silent revolution in brewing since 1992 in Kishanganj district of Bihar. Mr. Raj Karan Daftari, Chairman of Daftari Group, which owns Rajbari Brand, started tea plantations in Bihar for the first time at Kalidas Kismat Panchayat of Goruk
Bihar, today, plays a key role in the Tea Map of India with around 10000 hectares of land under Tea Plantations. There are around 8000 big & small tea planters in the state, generating direct & indirect employment for more than 30000 people. There are eleven (11) tea processing units operational in the state of Bihar, and there are another thirty (30+) processing units in the neighborhood state of West Bengal, which are completely dependent on the tea grown in Bihar. Bihar ranks 5th in the country in terms of area under Tea Plantations.
Tea Board of India, on finding Land & Climate suitable, declared five (5) Blocks of Kishanganj district of Bihar, namely 1.Kishanganj 2.Thakurganj 3.Pothia 4. Bahadurganj 5.Dighalbank as non-traditional area for the purpose of tea planting activity vide Ref No. 8(16)/DTD/88/999 dated June 1, 1999.
Government of Bihar (Department of Agriculture), has issued notification vide N.H.M./P.H.D.S./170/2020/1367, dated 19.08.2020, authorizing Directorate of Horticulture for monitoring & supervision of Tea Plantations, Processing and related activities. The tea has also been identified as one of the seven focus sectors by the State Government under Bihar Agri Investment Promotion Policy (BAIPP), 2020.
The Government of Bihar has also adopted on Identification Mark/Logo for the teas planted & Processed in the state of Bihar.
Tea plantations have played a major role in the socio-economic development of Kishanganj district with notable increase in Women empowerment, Infrastructural development, Crime reduction, Large scale plantations.
Bihar carries ample potential for the Tea Plantations with hidden potential in the districts of Araria, Purnea & Katihar. In the times to come, we may see Bihar as a remarkable tea producing area in the world map of Tea.
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