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Land issues dominate Bengal government-industry meeting

Special Correspondent

KOLKATA: Land issues dominated a meeting held between industry and the Ministers and senior officials of the West Bengal government over the weekend. As against last Saturday's open house, this was a closed-door meeting and one that last lasted over two hours, continuing till late at night.

Among the industry representatives was a senior official of a Tata Group company.

The meeting was held under the aegis of the Core Committee for Industries constituted by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee during her meeting with the industry last week. It has 25 members and comprises besides the Chief Minister, the Industry Minister, the Finance Minister and the Small and Micro Industries Minister and senior department officials. On the industry side there is representation from the three apex industry bodies and seven local chambers.

The committee will meet fortnightly and Friday was its first meeting.

The Chamber representatives put forward many queries regarding the new directive on land acquirement asking how a prospective investor from outside the State could go about the process without government help.This point was also raised by ITC chairman Y. C. Deveshwar during last week's meeting. At the meeting the industry representatives were asked to forward their suggestions by next Friday which would be put before the Chief Minister so that the matter could be discussed and perhaps a direction would evolve at the next meeting slated for July 8.

It was also decided that a separate committee would be set up for the IT industry whose problems were slightly different.

An industry representative said that in view of the ongoing legal tussle between the State Government and Tata Motors Ltd, the interface was very cordial.

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