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Kerala’s plantation sector headed for turmoil

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Thiruvananthapuram: Mounting costs of producing tea, rubber, cardamom and coffee and the low prices the yield fetches is severely affecting the plantation sector in Kerala, an official of the planters’ organisation said on Wednesday.

B.K. Ajith, secretary of the Association of Planters Kerala (APK) – an umbrella organization of planters of tea, rubber, cardamom and coffee – said the plantation sector can go haywire in two months.

The group represents about 60 percent of the organised plantation sector in the state.

Kerala today accounts for 82 percent of the country’s rubber production, 71 percent of cardamom, six percent of the tea and 21 percent of the coffee.

The daily wages of more than three lakh plantation workers, who ended their three week-long strike early this month, were increased recently.

But Ajith hinted at other factors which lead to an increase in the production costs.

The production costs of cardamom stands at Rs.700 a kg, while the market price of a kilogram of cardamom is Rs.620, he said.

“Coffee planters in Kerala are going to be seriously affected as production in Brazil has reached much higher levels. There has been a currency devaluation as well. Thus, all cash crops in Kerala will be seriously affected,” added Ajith.

APK officials are also peeved that their long standing demands for reducing the plantation, agricultural and land taxes have fallen on deaf ears.

While Tamil Nadu levies no taxes in the plantation sector, Kerala charges Rs.700 a hectare as plantation tax. The agriculture income tax is 50 percent of the profits, while in other states it is 28 percent. The land tax here is Rs.500 a hectare, Ajith complained.

Similarly, the electricity tariff was increased for the plantation sector last year, he said.

“If something drastic does not happen, things will come to a halt very soon,” said Ajith.

(IANS)

 

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Top 10 Malayalam movies you should definitely watch

Mollywood has some great cinematic pieces to its credit. India's first Rs.1000 crore film was also announced in Mollywood only.

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Maayalam movies are some of the best movies produced in India. Wikimedia Commons
Maayalam movies are some of the best movies produced in India. Wikimedia Commons
  • Kerala is one of the best states in India to live, and their movies are some of the best too.
  • Malayalam film industry or Mollywood is said to be superior in terms of screenplay and plots than other film industries in India.
  • The new and old Malayalam movies, all are equally beautiful and some of them are nothing short of a thrilling ride for the audiences.

Malayalam film industry or Mollywood is highly underrated, we don’t hear much about it. Every year, this industry produces some of the best films which are not only appreciated by audiences but also by critics. Malayalam movies are a great example of sensible cinema.

Mollywood has some great cinematic pieces to its credit. India’s first Rs.1000 crore film was also announced in Mollywood only. Malayalam movies are said to be superior in terms of stories, screenplay and direction when compared to other Indian language movies. For how truth it holds, let us take a look at top 10 best Malayalam movies one should definitely watch :

Drishyam

Everyone knows about this movie. It was critically acclaimed and won audience’s hearts with its amazing dialogues and performances, especially by Mohanlal. The movie was a thrilling murder suspense, which had all of us at the edge of our seats. This Malayalam movie has been dubbed into various languages and even after years from its initial release in 2013, is still one of the audience’s favourite suspense movies to watch. It’s Bollywood remake of the same name was equally successful.

Guru

Guru was a fantasy movie which used mythological characters like Yamaraj and Chitragupt, to shine the light on the otherwise ignored topic of communal violence. This movie has a universal appeal as it is relevant even today. Guru became a landmark Malayalam movie because of its experimental plotline, and Ilayaraaja’s brilliant music composition. Guru was also India’s official entry to the Oscars’ in the year, 1997.

Loudspeaker 

Loudspeaker, directed by Jayaraj, is the story of an uneducated man who always carries an old tape recorder with him along with his strong opinions. As an organ donor for an old man, he came as a ray of hope and happiness who swipes the sadness away. This is one movie where Mammootty is seen as a simple man and he is also at his best. The story may not be the most original but it will surely give you a warm feeling inside.

North 24 Kaatham 

A story revolving around a man who is a germaphobe and is a patient of OCD? The characters, storyline, and almost everything about this Malayalam movie is different and new. The man who along with three others experience a lifetime worth of troubles is an adventurous ride for the audience. By the end of the film, a happy feeling can be experienced by the viewers.

ABCD

 

ABCD or American Born-Confused Desi is a comedy which portrays the story of an NRI boy who is sent to his hometown in Kerala in order to make him more responsible. One thing leads to another and he ends up being a face of a revolution.The movie’s title is a satire on the term ABCD which is used as an insult to the Desi people.

Rathinirvedam 

Rathinirvedam is the remake of an old Malayalam movieofh the same name. This movie deals with the taboo topic of a young man falling for an older woman. It is one of the boldest films which showcased a love story forbidden by families and societies. It is definitely a must watch for those who are searching for something new.

 Salt N Pepper

This 2013 Mollywood movie directed by Ashiq Abu has an interesting theme and plot line. This Malayali movie mixes up food and love, and there can be no better combination than that for a successful film. This film is a modern day love story of two people who share a mutual love for food. The film will appeal to both foodies and romantics. It is funny, genuine, and a break from all other action and drama flicks we see releasing everyday.

Amen

Amen is a combination of romance, fantasy, comedy and music, which is about small village situated in the backwaters of Kerala. It is the story of a struggling musician. The film stars Fahadh Faasil, Swathi Reddy, and Indrajit Sukumaran in lead roles and is directed by Lijo Jose Pellissery. However, the film’s USP is its convincing story and the smartly written script.

Manjadikuru  

Anjali Menon’s Manjadikuru is an ode to all women who hold their own in a male dominated society. The story is all about childhood  nostalgia and make-believe we often indulge in as children. The film will take you on a beautiful adventure which will make you smile and think at the same time. This beautiful film evoked equally beautiful emotions and presented Kerala in a very pleasing light.

Thira

This movie by Vineeth Srinivasan will take you on a thrilling ride. It deals with the sensitive topic of human trafficking and prostitution.  Thira is a captivating watch which will keep you on the edge of your seat at all times.