It is early days for election-eve ha-ha; and yet there can be no debunking of what has been unveiled at the Bengal Global Business Summit in Kolkata. It would be premature to hazard a guess on whether the Rs.2.5 lakh crore worth of investment will attain fruition; previous exercises in Haldia, Mumbai, London and Singapore did not yield substantial results. That said, there is no denying that this is a tidy sum in the context of the inter-party strife and the industrial stagnation covering the Left and Trinamul regimes. The “summit” did register a remarkable degree of forward movement, chiefly in terms of investment offers. Certainly the absence of manday losses due to industrial action, if not militant trade unionism that was once tacitly condoned by the Left, was highlighted by the government. Development plans for Singur and Nayachar were announced. Unmistakable is a determined attempt to counter the perception that Bengal is not investmentfriendly. Markedly, the Chief Minister has called herself an “employee of the investor” and there was a distinct focus on offering “ease of doing business.” The fact that the investment proposals include Rs 1.16 lakh crore for the manufacturing sector alone ought to spur development economics. The contours of the roadmap are suggestive of a critical initiative in terms of public policy, preeminently the development of infrastructure , a segment that as often as not has repelled the potential investor. Overall, the agenda is impressive; yet the regret must be that the essay towards industrial resurgence comes when the present dispensation is going through the wrap-up motions of its first term in office. Ironically enough, Singur and Nandigram offered a silver lining. Ergo, it devolves on the government to follow through on the offer advanced by the Japanese firm, Kawasaki Rikuso Transportation Company. As reported in this newspaper, it proposes to invest Rs 150 crore for setting up solar panel warehouses and develop Singur&’s vegetable market as a vibrant entity that ought to benefit the peasantry-shortchanged by the Left and until now let down by Trinamul. It will be a double whammy for Singur if the project stutters in the manner of the Japanese-funded East-West Metro. At another remove, Nayachar has come to showcase the record of roller-coaster industrialisation plans-from a chemical hub (proposed by the CPI-M government) to an eco-park (Trinamul plan) via an NRI investor&’s power plant that wasn’t. On paper, an eco-park may be welcome, but the state must of necessity take a call on the adverse findings of the Geological Survey of India. The possible impact on fishermen is yet to be assessed, let alone the almost inevitable damage to flora and fauna. Overall though for now, Bengal must keep its fingers crossed.