Amid the lockdown for the novel
coronavirus. e-auction of 27 tendu units in the Nagpur forest division of Maharashtra has fetched Rs 5.13 crore this season, said an official on Tuesday.
Considering its employment potential, collection of tendu, or East Indian ebony, leaves was placed in the permissible list during lockdown for the coronavirus outbreak, he added.
"While there were doubts if collection would be possible this time due to the outbreak, it was a successful one. There are 31 tendu units. Of these, 27 units were e- auctioned for a total amount of Rs 5.13 crore," DCF Nagpur forest division Prabhu Nath Shukla told PTI.
"Strict social distancing norms are being followed while collecting leaves, and masks are mandatory. Collectors have also been told not to venture into the forests early in the morning or late evening in order to avoid attacks from wild animals," he said, adding that the collecting season will go on till mid June.
"Tendu collectors will get Rs 2200 per standard bag, as per state government rates. Each standard bag contains 1000 bundles, traditionally called pudha, of 70 leaves. Production potential of all tendu units is 28820 standard bags, which will fetch around Rs 6.34 crore in the form of wages to tendu collectors," he said.
Shukla said bonus to be distributed for the current year would be in the range of Rs 2.17 crore, and 17,924 families will be beneficiaries.
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