There’s some good news for the Indian tea industry which has been demanding that tea be declared the ‘national drink’ of India. A parliamentary standing committee on commerce, which was constituted on August 31, 2011, and submitted its report on August 9, 2012, has recommended that the beverage be given the status of ‘national drink’.

“The joint forum of Assam Tea Planters’ Association (ATPA), North Eastern Tea Association (NETA) and Bharatiya Cha Parishad (BCP), is extremely happy to know about the recommendations by such a high powered committee of the level of department related parliamentary standing committee on commerce,” said Bidyananda Barkakoty, chairman of NETA.

As per preliminary assessment done by state government agencies, Assam would need around Rs 2,500 crore “as immediate fund requirement” for restoration of infrastructure damaged by floods.

This year’s flood has been the worst in Assam since 2004 and caused severe damage to state’s infrastructure and agricultural crop. Government sources informed that as per the preliminary assessment, over 2,667 roads have been affected, including damage to bridges and culvers by the floods. Several national highways were submerged and developed potholes or were affected by landslides.