The newly-constructed building of the Siliguri Journalists’ Club (SJC) will be inaugurated by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee here tomorrow. As the SJC said this here today, office bearers of the club also made some more important announcements on its developments and further plans.

“On 20 January, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will be inaugurating the new twostorey building of the SJC by means of a remote control. The event will take place during the evening tomorrow,” General Secretary of the Club, Angshuman Chakraborty said. Miss Banerjee is set to inaugurate the building from the venue at Shiv Mandir at Matigara where she will also inaugurate the Uttar Banga Utsav.

The new SJC building is situated near the CRPF camp and the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital at Kawakhali on the outskirts of the town. “We will also be holding a small get-together for our members on 24 January in order to celebrate the occasion where eminent personalities of the town will also be invited,” he added.

President of the Club, Pramod Giri, said that the SJC, which was established in 1996, can look at this as “our biggest accomplishment as the completion of this building has been no less than a milestone in our journey.” The SJC also said it was instituting two awards for Journalists from this year.

“Every year, we will be giving away two awards–one for the best reporter and the other for the best photographer. This practice will continue in the years to come. The award will carry a purse of Rs 1,1000 each. The amount will, however, increase every year,” Mr Giri said. While one of the awards is named the ‘Pandit Rati Ram Sharma Memorial Award for Journalism,’ the name for the other one is yet to be finalised.

“We have also decided to go for corporate membership from now onwards. Hence, the chairman of the PCM group of industries, Kamal Kumar Mittal, will be the first corporate member of the SJC,” Mr Giri declared. Expressing their gratitude towards Miss Banerjee, the members said, “The building has been constructed with the help of the state government. Around Rs 1 crore 27 lakh has gone into the construction, so we are grateful to the chief minister.”