He inspected the area to take forward the process of identifying the plots to be returned
West Bengal Industries Minister Partha Chatterjee said on Tuesday that returning 400 acres of land to the farmers, who were allegedly unwilling to hand over their plots during the acquisition of 997.11 acres for the subsequently re-located Tata Motors' small car project at Singur, will not be much of a problem.
This followed his inspecting the area to take forward the process of identifying the plots to be returned and determining the status of the land in question.
“Realising Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's wish to return the land to farmers who were unwilling to part with it would not be too much of a problem,” Mr. Chatterjee said.
“We are preparing a note-sheet on plots to be returned as well as the status of the land in question which will be submitted to the Chief Minister,” he added.
Mr. Chatterjee spoke to officials concerned. Accompanying him were the West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation managing director Subrata Gupta, and School Education Minister Rabindranath Bhattacharya, who is also the local MLA. He held a meeting with WBIDC officials at a camp office located within the site area.
“Not only the people but both industry and agriculture will benefit from the plans the State government has for Singur,” Mr. Chatterjee said. “On one side is the returning of the land and on the other, the setting up of industry.”
The State government has said that industry will be set up on the remaining portion of the land that had been acquired for the small car project. The Tatas are welcome to set up industry there, Ms. Banerjee has said.
Mr. Chatterjee's visit to Singur came a day after the Chief Minister announced that her government is working on formulating a new land policy for the State. The policy is expected to address contentious issues such as acquisition of land for industry and other development projects.