Darjeeling brand has very good value : Mamata
Darjeeling (WB), Mar 14 (PTI) West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today said that the 'Darjeeling brand' has very good value and the ongoing first Darjeeling Business Summit has garnered Rs 1500 crore investment proposals.
"The Darjeeling brand has very good value and needs to be nurtured for proper utilisaion to attract more tourists and investment. We are happy to receive Rs 1,500 crore investment proposals at the first Darjeeling Business Summit," Banerjee said in her valedictory address at the summit.
The government has already started exploring how the 'Darjeeling Brand' could be utilised effectively to attract more tourists and investment, she said and assured that it would do its best for the area's development and to generate employment oppurtunities for the people.
"There is no cause of fear. We are together," she said while emphasising that Darjeeling Hills as an integral part of the state of West Bengal.
The Bengal Ambuja and Keventer groups have taken the initial initiative for investment in Darjeeling and have identified the areas like Makaibari and Matigara to set up hotels and food processing units.
Kurseong would have an industry hub, she said adding that the talent of the hill people could be utilised in all these initiatives.
"If peace continues in Darjeeling hills, investment will be there to boost the development process ... There are so many areas including eco-tourism, tea tourism, horticulture, floriculture, cinchona cultivation where businessmen can think about investing. This will help in generating employment," Banerjee said.
The Confederation of Indian Industry, which partnered the state government and the Gorkha Territorial Administration to organise the business summit, has already prepared an action plan for development in the hills, she said adding the final plan will be submitted later.
The chief minister also welcomed investments from Sikkim businessmen who are interested in investing in Darjeeling. "You too take part in this initiative to boost development in Darjeeling."
She cautioned the hill people saying "Whenever Darjeeling makes progress some dirty games begin in its neighbouring areas. Don't allow this to happen."
Darjeeling had experienced turmoil last year with the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha sponsoring a 104-day-long strike in the hills to push for a separate Gorkhaland state. The strike had ended in September and hit hard its tea industry. PTI AKB KK KK
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