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Tata shortlists WB to set up its small car unit

Written by: Staff

Kolkata, May 12: The decision to set up the much talked about small car manufacturing plant by Tata Motors in West Bengal is 'almost final', the state Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee announced after a meeting with Tata Motors Managing Director Ravi Kant here today.

Briefing mediapersons about the outcome of the nearly half an hour meeting with Tata Motors Managing Director, a visibly satisfied Chief Minister said, '' We have been finalising this much sought after project with Tata Motors for more than two months. I could not announce it earlier because of the elections.'' ''Though the company is still looking at possible sights, their decision is almost final,'' a beaming Chief Minister told newsmen, only a day after the ruling Left Front won thumping majority in the just concluded the state assembly elections.

He, however, refused to elaborate further on the issue.

Later, Mr Kant said the company has shortlisted West Bengal, along with two other states, for setting up the proposed new small car unit.

Tata Motors Managing Director said though he met the Chief Mninster to congratulate him for returning to the power for his party's huge victory, also discussed the possibility of setting up the proposed new plant in the state.

He said they had already visited a number of sights in the state, including one in Kharagpur, Uluberia, Dancuni and Haldia, but were yet to take any final decision.

Mr Kant said the company was also looking at suitable sights in some other states. However, he also mentioned that they had shortlisted West Bengal along with a couple of other states and exploring every possibility of setting up the unit here.

He said they would take the final decision very shortly but did not mention whether it would be in favour of the state.

Elaborating on the issue, West Bengal Commerce and Industries Minister Nirupam Sen, who also recorded a huge victory yesterday, said Tata Motors Chairman Ratan Tata has written a letter to the Chief Minister Budhhadeb Bhattacherjee today, not only to congratulate him for the thumping victory but also seeking an appointment with him either on May 17 or 18 to dicuss the matter further.

Refusing to elaborate on the size of investment or the size of land the company was looking for, both Mr Sen and Mr Kant said the process of identifying the exact location of the proposed plant was still on and the final decision in this regard was expected within next ten days.

However, informed sources said Tata Motors was looking at 3,000 acres of land for setting up the plant to produce small cars with the price tag of Rs 1 lakh.



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