Kochi: Association of Planters of Kerala on Saturday came out against the demand of environmentalists and a section of society to withdraw exemptions given to plantation crops in the Kerala Land Reforms Act.
The Association Chairman Y Raghavan said there would be far reaching consequences if exemptions granted to plantations in holding lands under the Act was withdrawn.
"In our opinion, such views are short-sighted and will have far reaching detrimental consequences on the economy and socio-economic development of the state," he said, delivering the keynote address at the APK's annual general body meeting.
Referring to the 'ill effects' of such a decision, he said if exemption granted to plantations was removed, it would lead to fragmentation of holdings and plantations would eventually cease to exist in Kerala.
Fragmentation of holdings, particularly in Western Ghats would lead to mushrooming of real estate and irresponsible tourism which will put pressure on the ecological balance in that area, he pointed out.
More than 11 lakh workers employed in plantations would lose their jobs and this would create serious social economic problems for the state, he said.
The Association also expressed concern on uncontrolled imports of natural rubber by tyre manufacturing companies.