Health Condition and Health Awareness Among the Tea Garden Laborers: A Case Study of a Tea Garden in Tinsukia District of Assam
Bimal Kishore Sahoo
Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee
Indian Institute of Technology, Bhubaneswar
January 4, 2011
The IUP Journal of Agricultural Economics, Vol. VII, No. 4, pp. 50-72, October 2010
The Assam Human Development Report of 2003, acknowledged the fact that the health status of its tea garden laborers is much below the state average; the state itself is languishing at the bottom. The present study is an attempt to explore the health condition of the tea industry laborers, especially laborers of the Beesakopie tea garden, a garden in Tinsukia District of Assam. The study reveals that a significant percentage (23%) of labor families suffer from calorie deficiency of more than 1,200 calories. Further, it is also observed that there is a huge gap between the per capita requirement and intake of both protein and carbohydrate among the laborers and their families. Therefore, it was observed that the laborers are suffering from various disorders like fever, cough, anemia, hypertension, gastric problems, skin problems, etc. Moreover, the data reflect that a considerable percentage of members of labor families died during the last five years due to tuberculosis, high blood pressure, lack of proper treatment and so on. Child mortality is also observed whose reasons are not known to the laborers, indicating the lack of awareness among the laborers. Further, the laborers do not show any interest to go to hospital for treatment. The laborers are ignorant or are not conscious about personal hygiene and sanitation practices. Moreover, only 1% of labor families use filter to purify water. Therefore, health awareness among the tea industry laborers is very poor. Thus, the government as well as the authority of the tea industry should consider this serious issue as an integral part of the developmental plan, for equitable and sustainable economic growth of the country.
Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: January 5, 2011
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