Urging people not to create impediments for industries that were creating jobs in Bengal even during demonetisation just due to “petty politics”, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday said: “I will request everyone including the district administration, MPs, MLAs, employees and local people to extend full cooperation to the setting up and expansion of factories”.
Banerjee, on Monday, inaugurated a state-of-the-art battery making plant of Exide Industries Ltd, adjacent to its existing unit, at Haldia in East Midnapore.
Without naming the erstwhile Left Front government, Banerjee said, “Harassing industries just for cheap politics had been a phenomenon earlier. I would request all to cooperate for setting up of new factories and expansion of the existing ones.”
“I would request the district administration, MPs, MLAs, local people and employees to fully cooperate so that no one faces any trouble when investing in the state,” she said adding that at present Bengal was the destination for investment.
Stating that industries were an asset and ancillary industries are as big an asset, she said that “Management, local people and employees should have good understanding and peace must be maintained.”
Banerjee continued her attack on the Modi government saying that both industry and agriculture were affected due to demonetisation. The Centre is talking about cashless economy when there are no banks in 92 per cent areas of the country.
“I do not have any personal agenda and will continue protesting against the dictatorship,” she said.
The Chief Minister said, “People are losing jobs due to demonetisation. I would like to thank the companies including Exide for creating job opportunities in Bengal in such a situation when many industries are passing through turmoil. Thus, maintenance of peace is important for development.”
The work culture in Bengal has been restored. Earlier, there used to be a loss in 80 million man days but now it has dropped to zero, she said adding, “I would like to thank all the employees for joining their work when bandhs were called twice in the past two months. We have to give importance to the potential of the employees.”
Welcoming Exide for choosing Bengal for the expansion project even though they have factories in many other states, the Chief Minister said, “The investment will create job opportunities for local people and technical experts.”
Gautam Chatterjee, Managing Director and CEO of Exide, said, “The plant is built in technical collaboration with US based East Penn Manufacturing Company at an investment of Rs 700 crore to manufacture, for the first time in India, lead acid storage batteries using Punched Grid Technology. We have chosen Haldia for the expansion plan considering the present peaceful situation, work culture and progressive attitude of the employees.”