Religious harmony essential for development: Swraj Paul

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Barrackpore, Apr 11 (UNI) Caparo Group founder Lord Swraj Paul today asserted that economic development was not possible unless the people work unitedly, irrespective of caste, creed and religious differences.

Leading a four-member Commonwealth Parliamentary Association delegation, Mr Paul was here to conduct an on-the-spot study of the progress of work of the DFID-funded KUSP programme undertaken by the Barrackpore Municipality.

Talking to a working group of women under a community management programme for the minorities, he said, ''Unless unity among the people is achieved no development is possible.'' The delegation was also accompanied by a team of representatives from the Indian office of the DFID.

The delegation visited a slum area of 59 families situated by the side of the Ghoshpara road under Barrackpore Municipality near the Hindusthan Aeronautics Limited factory here.

The local civic body had implemented a Rs 30 lakh KUSP scheme to improve the pathways, sanitation and drinking water supply system.

Mr Paul expressed concern about the economic status of the people living in the slum area.

He also enquired about the livelihood of the people which they earned from milk production.

The slum was built on a private land most of which was owned by a Mosque Committee, the municipality authorities told the visitors.

The delegation was also shown the activities of a community management programme where the Municipality, with the financial assistance of the ICF, launched a zari and embroidery project, costing Rs 37 lakh, for 100 women from the minority community.

Earlier, Barrackpore Municipality Chairman Bijali Kanti Mitra, local MP Taritbaran Topdar and local Legislators Dr Praveen Kumar and Dr K D Ghosh welcomed the delegation.

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