As Beedi Industry Faces Existential Crisis, Politicians Above Party Line Speak Up

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Delhi: Beedi is Sawdeshi, organic, no report claimed yet that it causes cancer but the implementation of Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) amendments will further increase the grave unemployment situation in India, so there is a separate law needed for the Beedi industry. These were the views of the dignitaries present at the launch of the book on women beedi rollers.

Probably it was the first time that a cross-section of people met at national capital not only to launch a book on India’s women beedi workers—Study on Lack of Alternate Employment for Women Beedi Rollers but also to discuss the future of the Beedi industry since implementation of Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) amendments will led to millions of beedi workers unemployed.

The evening which was dedicated to women beedi rollers was attended by Bharatiya Janata Party leaders including Minister of State for Labour & Employment Rameswar Teli, Rajya Sabha MP Sushil Modi, Trinamool Congress’ Saugata Roy and Dola Sen, Nationalist Congress Party’s leader and ex-minister Praful Patel, trade union leaders, activists and journalists. There were 25 Members of Parliament present on the occasion. And the discussion was moderated by senior journalist Priya Sehgal. But there were two other special guests too– one was Cuban Ambassador Simancas Marin and another were several women beedi workers.

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