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Bengal cabinet permits HM to sell off land for revival

Written by: Staff

Kolkata, Aug 24 (UNI) In a bid to help Hindustan Motors come out of red, the West Bengal Government today gave assent to the management to sell off 314 acres of land to raise Rs. 85 crore for the company's economic revival and payment of arrears of employees.

The state cabinet, at its meeting, decided to give go ahead to the C K Birla company taking umbrage of the West Bengal Land Reforms (Amendment) Act, 2005.

Relief Minister Mortaza Hossain said out of the total amount, the HM management would invest Rs. 70 crore for the company's revival and spend Rs. 15 crore towards payment of arrears of the employees.

"The cabinet has allowed the company to sell off 314 acres of its unused land out of a total area of 709 acres. The move will be possible with the amendment of the section 142 (Z) of the land reforms act that facilitates to bring in change in the character of industrial land," the Minister said.

The company would ensure that an integrated IT complex, a hospital, a housing complex for the IT employees and an automobile parts manufacturing unit were set up on the proposed land, he said.

The proposal of the company for development of its excess land as part of a restructuring programme had been pending with the state Government for for more than three years. However, the company revised its original plan and submitted it to the Government recently.

The plan divided surplus land into three parts, for redevelopment into auto component park, IT park and residential complex.

The land revenue department cleared the HM proposal last week.

The company had appointed HDFC to bring in investors for the IT, auto component and real estate projects.

HM chairman C K Birla said at the company's last annual general meeting that HDFC would act as a consultant for the project.

He had said then that Hindustan Motors would invite leading Indian auto component manufacturers to set up export oriented units at its Uttarpara factory as part of its revival plan for the unit.

According to Birla, the IT, auto component and real estate zones would share the 314 acres of surplus land equally.

The cabinet, which was attended among others, by Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, also decided to acquire 270 acres in Rajarhat on the eastern fringe of the city for setting up of an integrated truck transport complex in New Town, Rajarhat on the eastern fringe of the city.

The government has teamed up with a consortium of two Hyderabad-based companies to build the proposed complex at an estimated cost of Rs. 1,500 crore.

According to the plan, 50 acres will house a truck terminal, with facilities to park at least 500 trucks. Warehouses, wholesale markets, weigh bridges, petrol pumps, emission test centres, rest houses, eateries and entertainment centres will be part of the terminal.

The cabinet also okayed a Government proposal to recruit 1100 employees for the state-run Power Development Corporation(PDCL).


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