Kolkata: Being termed as West Bengal's Gujarat Summit, which wrapped up after a successful show on Saturday last week, the Trinamool government's Bengal Leads Conclave is set to begin at the industrial town of Haldia on Tuesday. The second edition of the three-day industrial fair is intended to showcase the town as a prime industrial destination.
Although the Bengal government is keen to attract investment to put its economy back on track, Chief Minister of the state and Trinamool Congress party supremo Mamata Banerjee's hands off policy on acquiring land for private investors and provisions of land ceiling are considered to the major hurdles for investment. Ironically, it was from the Haldia port that bulk cargo handlers ABG LDA pulled out recently alleging government apathy and TMC-led political high handedness.
Around 1,500 delegates from all over the world are expected to participate in the fair and around 210 stalls have been set up for the event, which begins at 2:00 pm in the afternoon, to woo the industrialists. The event would be inaugurated by Mamata.
However, speculation are abound that the event may fail to attract even a single top notch industrialist of the country. Despite claims by the state Industries Minister Partha Chatterjee that the summit has some surprises in store, the schedule suggests that state has managed to rope in board level executives of only two listed companies to speak at the event. Moreover, the government is yet to find any speaker at all from the industry for the final session on environment issues.
The latest round of political violence in the state may also act as spoilers even as Communist Party of India (Marxist) alleged on Sunday that TMC workers vandalised one of its stages a few kilometres away from the summit venue, which was built to protest the present government's industrial policy.