A report prepared by the West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation (WBIDC) on the industrial scenario of the state — from 2011 to 2013 — has belied the tall claims of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
While at both 2014 and 2015 industrial summits, the state government claimed to have received investment proposals worth around Rs 2 lakh crore, the WBIDC report stated that between June 2011 and September 2013, the government had got investment proposals worth just Rs 17,756 crore.
However, at the Bengal Global Business Summit held in January this year, state Finance Minister Amit Mitra had claimed that Bengal had attracted Rs 83,212 crore investment between April 2011 and December 2014, which includes investment in operational as well as upcoming large and medium industrial units.
Meanwhile, for these proposals worth Rs 17,756 crore, 1,388 acres of land and 1,19,984 sq ft area have been allotted to different units at various industrial parks.
The biggest proposal, according to the WBIDC report accessed by The Indian Express, had come from Matix Fertiliser and Chemicals Limited, which proposed to invest Rs 11,000 crore for an ammonia plant at Panagarh in Burdwan district.
This was followed by National Glass and Industries Limited, with investment proposal of Rs 3,616 crore, and Reliance Cements Company, which is investing Rs 554 crore for a cement plant in Purulia. Maruti Suzuki, which has got 60 acres at Panagarh in Burdwan for a logistics hub, has proposed to invest Rs 103 crore there.
Moreover, as far as employment opportunities are concerned, the investments are supposed to generate 26,980 jobs once the projects were complete. However, at the Bengal Global Business Summit held in Kolkata in January, Mamata had said that one crore jobs have been created in the last three years.
Industrialists, however, are not ready to give up hope. Ashok Aikat, a leading industrialist of Kolkata, said: “Several proposals may be there but not all are implemented. However, this government is serious in roping in business from outside.”