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SEZs needed for growth: Yunus

Special Correspondent

Peasants should not suffer in the process of land acquisition



Muhammad Yunus

KOLKATA: Agricultural land should be made available for industry but it should also be ensured that peasants are not hard hit in the process of land acquisition, Dr. Muhammad Yunus said here on Sunday. The Nobel laureate who is in the city on a two-day visit said, "There should be no debate over the requirement of agricultural land for industry without which economic growth will lag behind."

On Special Economic Zones, the Nobel laureate said: "SEZs are needed for growth. They are being set up all across the world and we cannot sit idle."

He emphasised, however, that the interests of the peasants ought to be protected as much as possible in the process of industrialisation.

The Bangladeshi micro-credit pioneer added that he was laying emphasis on the concept of "social business" for the betterment of society. Explaining the concept Dr. Yunus said that while the principal motive of business now was often seen as making profit the main thrust of "social business" was towards building infrastructure for health care, drinking water supplies and housing.

On the Grameen Bank's activities and the relevance of the model adopted by it in countries besides Bangladesh, he said providing micro-level credit was prevalent in one form or another all over India too. West Bengal is no exception, he added.

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