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Industry captains promise Mamata Rs 2.43 lakh crore

“Don’t look at the past, it is gone. We are really sorry for that and I apologize for that. Whatever happened is not good. But let us think for today and work for tomorrow,” she said in her closing address at the two-day Bengal Global Business Summit.

The Trinamool Congress chief said, “We have to suffer the legacy of the previous government. It’s because of their financial indiscipline and lack of vision that we have to suffer. Because of the huge financial burden, we are constrained in helping out industry. So I apologize to industry for the deeds of the past government.”

She informed that the state received investment proposals worth around Rs 2.43 lakh crore during the summit. These proposals are spread across sectors like education, health, mining, steel, port, urban infrastructure, food processing, power, infrastructure, MSMEs, financial services, tourism and hospitality.

She said that West Bengal could not be compared to any other state in the country as the state was saddled with the legacy of debt burden that was not experienced by others. “After coming to power, we found that there is no economic freedom and whatever we are earning is being taken away for debt repayment,” said Banerjee.

There was no option as we had committed to FRBM (Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management) Act for fiscal discipline, she added.

Banerjee came to power in 2011 after over three decades of Left Front rule in the state. “If we consider the debt burden which the state is facing, then Bengal’s performance is number one not only in India but also in the world. There is evidence to prove that,” the chief minister said.

She told investors that land was readily available for projects in the manufacturing sector. “Land is available everywhere for the manufacturing sector. If land is taken forcibly, then there will be a scuffle. Negotiation is the proper route. We have just given 4,000 acres to SAIL for its expansion plan at Burnpur,” she said.

On the power situation, she said, “Many people say that the state is surplus on this front as there is no industry. I want to ask them, if there is no industry, then how have so many investors and businessmen  assembled here for the summit?” Representatives from 20 countries attended the meet along with industrialists like Adi Godrej and industry captains both from the state as well as outside.
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