Bengal to make fresh offer to Infy, Wipro

Left Front govt offers 45 acres of land each to IT giants at Rajarhat

Bengal to make fresh offer to Infy, Wipro


West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee at a press meet in Kolkata on Thursday. PTI

“I am appealing to them through you (media) to consider our alternative proposal,” Bhattacharjee said. Wipro which already has a unit in Salt Lake, was keen on expanding its operations while Infy was eager to set up its first shop in the city and the two units were estimated to have generated employment opportunities for around 16,000 workers. 

The chief minister conceded that he was a ‘little upset’ after the Vedic Village controversy erupted, putting the entire ‘Kolkata Links’ project in jeopardy. “We had negotiated with a company (Vedic Reality) to buy land from them and it was almost final. Unfortunately, we came to know how that company acquired land by exploiting farmers over there and it is morally incorrect to take that land now,” Bhattacharjee said.

While stating that the government has, for the time being, dropped the idea of taking that land (next to Vedic Village) now, the chief minister hastened to add that the land already acquired over there could not remain like that. “We can’t say right now what happens to that portion of land in future. We need land for various purposes. You’ve to wait and see,” Bhattacharjee said.

The chief minister had gone into a ‘near silence’ mode after the Vedic Village affair seriously dented his and also the image of the West Bengal government. It was only on Wednesday that he attended the state CPM secretariat meet followed by a meeting of the Left Front where he summarily rejected the proposal of housing minister Goutam Dev.

Vertical unit

Dev proposed to offer 10 acres of land to the IT majors each for building a ‘vertical’ unit somewhere at Rajarhat.

The offer was on the lines of the recent demand made by Trinamool Congress, senior TC leader Partha Chatterjee claimed.

“This is completely in line with the demand made by Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee that Infosys and Wipro should be given land for setting up their units,” Chatterjee told PTI.

He slammed Bhattacharjee for announcing the government’s new offer from the CPM’s state party headquarters instead of from state secretariat Writers’ Building.

“We wonder how the chief minister could announce a government decision from his party headquarters,” Chatterjee, who is the Leader of the Opposition, said. He said Banerjee has demanded that the state government publish a white paper on agricultural land forcibly acquired at New Town and elsewhere in the state.

‘Question on resignation bogus’

West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on Thursday snapped when asked to respond to the speculation that he had resigned calling a question lobbed at him by a newsperson on the issue as “bogus” reports PTI from Kolkata. “I cannot reply to bogus questions,” Bhattacherjee shot back breaking his silence on the issue when asked to clear the air about his missing CPI-M politburo meetings of late and on speculation that he had quit office.

He had skipped the last two politburo meetings and the meeting of chief ministers called by the Prime Minister citing ill health. Last week, Bhattacharjee had taken a break from office and spent almost a week at a hill resort in North Bengal with an English daily here claiming that he had put in his papers with his party.

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