Tabled by the government in the Assembly yesterday is a document titled ‘District-wise Vested Land (Non-Agricultural) in West Bengal available for Industrial and Commercial Purposes’. Total amount of such land is 22,412.761 acres.
By any yardstick, this quantity is paltry, what with SEZs asking for tens of thousands acres for each such. This is the land already acquired by the government, and presumably ready for disbursal.
But what queers the pitch is the fact that nearly 73% of this fallow land is located in Jalpaiguri district and the hilly terrains of Darjeeling district, the latter having as much as 10,831.55 acres of it.
Unfortunately for the government, the East Medinipur district where both Nandigram and Haldia are located, the amount of non-agricultural vested land is just about 19.79 acres, while Hooghly district, home to the proposed Singur car factory of Tatas, has 96 acres under government control.
It is obvious that the government cannot accommodate all the land-requiring industries that have queued up at its door for setting up facilities. Which means the left government has a tall task on its hand to meet the onrush of demands by companies needing land.
It remains to be seen how the demand-supply situation is managed by the government in coming days, especially in view of stringent opposition by various political parties. [Collated from ET, Kolkata, March 31]