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Love, not pressure in Bengal; people will give hearts to investors: Mamata

IANS | Kolkata |

In an effort to move away from West Bengal’s ‘investor-wary’ image and woo much-needed investments, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday said its people will dedicate their hearts to Indian and foreign industrialists if they infused capital in the state.

Inaugurating the fourth edition of Bengal Global Business Summit, she also assured industrialists that there is “no pressure, discrimination, and intimidation” in the state and Bengal has only “love and affection” for them.

“If you invest in Bengal, the state will give you everything. We cannot invest, but we can dedicate our heart and ourselves to you.

“We love India and unity of India. We love tolerance. You must invest in Bengal. The state is attracting businesses from all over the world like never before. There is no pressure, discrimination, intimidation… only love, affection and attraction is here,” she said.

The business summit was attended by a host of prominent industrialists, including L.N. Mittal of Arcelor Mittal, Sajjan Jindal of JSW Steel, Kishor Biyani of Future group, Uday Kotak, the head of Kotak group, and Sanjiv Goenka, chairman of RP-Sanjiv Goenka group.

The Czech Republic, France, Germany, Poland, Italy, Japan, China, South Korea, Britain and the UAE are among the 32 overseas nations participating at the mega business gathering.

More than 4,000 delegates have attended the mega business gathering, Banerjee said adding that Chinese delegation comprises 39 members, Poland’s team 50 members, South Korea 48 members, Italy has 40 delegates and the British number 25.

“The presence of so many industry leaders shows that Bengal means business,” she said.

However, no Union Ministers were present at the summit and their absence could be attributed to the deteriorating relations between the BJP-led central government and the state’s Trinamool Congress regime.

The Chief Minister also said the state holds potential in power, port, agro-based industries, IT and ITes, urban development, health and education and many other sectors.

Reminding investors that West Bengal was the gateway to the northeastern states and neighbouring countries of Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh, Banerjee made a passionate appeal to them to come to the state.

“Please consider Bengal as your home and Bengal will work with transparency, accountability, credibility, sincerity and punctuality. We consider all of you as our family members. It is a collective family and without you, we account think and organise the event,” she said.

Banerjee also said the state emerged as the number one in many parameters, including e-governance and digital applications in delivering public services despite the “long legacy” of the Left Front government of “doing nothing”.

“No man-days were lost. Six years ago, man-days lost was 78 lakh due to agitations during the regime of the Left Front (that ruled Bengal between 1977 and 2011). We do not allow any strike and blockade. If there is a problem, we sort it out,” she said.

Banerjee claimed that Maharashtra and other states are saturated and Bengal is the new investment destination now, having created more than 81 lakh employment opportunities within six years of the Trinamool government regime.

“I can assure you one thing that Bengal will not deprive anybody,” she added.