Haldia: Assuring industry captains that land would not be an issue, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday said that the land bank, set up by her government, was there to meet the need.
"We have land bank. Land will not be an issue for industry," the Chief Minister said, unveiling the Calcutta Electric Supply Corporation's 600 MW Rs 4,600 crore thermal power plant in this industrial township.
She also said that her state had surplus power and that industrial growth was on good track.
Citing an instance of the NTPC's proposed 1,320 MW power plant at Katawa, Banerjee said, "Sometime back there was a land dispute between the farmers and the NTPC, but the government had sorted it out."
"We have provided 100 acres of land from the land bank. The local people are happy," she said, adding that similarly land had been made available for the DVC's 1,200 MW plant at Raghunathpur in Purulia district.
Land for the West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Limited's plants in Sagardighi and Purulia had also been allotted, she said.
She said there was some problem at Andal (the proposed greenfield airport). "It was a local issue. We solved the problem."
"We are also adding 5,840 MW capacity under the Centre-state government joint project," she said.
Assuring industrialists that all problems could be sorted out, she said, "Industry needs power, manpower, atmosphere, land and friendly atmosphere".
"There has to be a bridge between the employer and the employee. Then there will never be any problem," the Chief Minister said, adding small issues can be solved through talks.
"Bengal will surge ahead on the path of development. Industrial infrastructure is being developed," she said, adding that the "number of mandays lost in Bengal has come down from 80 lakh to zero".
She also said that Bengal's growth rate in the service sector was higher than the national average, and that "Bengal is a gateway to the Northeast". Referring to the proposed global investors' meet being organised by the state government in January 2015, she said, "A delegation from Bangladesh has also been invited."
She said that tea and jute were two sectors which were having some problems.
"The owners must sort out the problem. One must understand that all employees are not equal. In jute, it is a recurring problem. Inform us when the problem is small so that we can control it before it gets bigger," she said, adding, "There should be a constructive approach. Bengal is a gateway. There is lot of capacity and scope."
On labour problem, she said, "We will be happy if the employers and the employees are happy."
She also urged gram sabhas and other bodies of the panchayats to play a "constructive role" in industrial development.
"Agricultural marketing is an important sector with a lot of potential," she said, adding, "We are building Kisan Bazaars in every block. This is being done in PPP mode."
"We have started helicopter services between Kolkata and towns like Haldia, Balurghat, Durgapur," she said.