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Indian Real Estate News : Kolkata
US adopts West Bengal as \'partner State\'
Source: Business Line May 11, 2012
An American write-up says in a light vein:"If you are not sure if you live in Texas, go outside and greet the first person you see with a loud, cheerful 'Howdy pardner'. If (s)he responds in a positive way, you may be in Texas.  If (s)he does not respond, you may be in New York City. Regardless of where you live, you qualify as an honorary Texan by saying 'Howdy pardner' ".
Well, I only hope that regardless of Ms Hillary Clinton having a residence in New York City, but now living in Washington D.C., she will respond whenever, in future, Ms Mamata Banerjee greets her with "Howdy pardner?" Only, it is difficult to imagine Mamata as a Texan and her State as Texas! (It is only harmless humour, Didi!)

Coming now to brass-tacks, what exactly is the connotation of a "partner State"? Does it connote any formal relationship, spelling out the mutual duties, rights and obligations?
For instance, the UN-Habitat sponsored Partner University Initiative envisages a Constitution and a Charter laying down the mission, goal, principles, procedures and guidelines and areas to be covered. Some universities in India also enter into bilateral partnerships with foreign educational institutions as a means of exchange of faculties and information on best practices, and as a source of funding for specified programmes.

West Bengal becoming a "partner State" with Ms Clinton's promise of "all kinds of help" cannot carry any such implications or obligations, given India's Constitution and political setup. It is only an affirmation of the US interest in the economic and business development of the State and in enlarging the scope for American investment and collaboration in sectors mutually agreed upon. Ms Banerjee has unerringly put her finger on the ones - information technology, manufacturing, deep sea ports, tourism, health care and education - that are most relevant and appropriate for West Bengal.


But mere declaration of intent will mean nothing without preparing an action-oriented, time-bound blueprint enumerating the concrete projects and schemes, and working out modalities of their phased implementation after identifying the source and flow of funds.
For this purpose, it is essential for the State government to establish, under the Chief Minister's chairmanship, an inter-disciplinary Brains Trust of knowledgeable professionals and experienced administrators with practical experience of planning and executing projects, and to make sure that it comes up with a report within a period of three months or so.

Recently, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Ms J. Jayalalithaa, has put together a Vision 2023 document and followed it up with an enabling legislation and an institutional mechanism with her as the chairperson. Mr Nitish Kumar of Bihar is another Chief Minister widely acclaimed for his incredible achievement in turning around a State which was all but dismissed as incorrigible.
If viewed by setting aside political inhibitions, Gujarat too has made vast and rapid strides in a number of sectors and has to its credit an impressive record of development. It has received kudos from reputed international agencies and news media.

I would strongly urge Ms Banerjee to draw on the best features of models that already exist by arranging a joint brainstorming, first, among officials, and subsequently among the concerned Ministers, and incorporate the ideas that emerge in West Bengal's own strategy.
Investments will not begin to flow simply because Ms Hillary Clinton has made West Bengal a "partner State". Institutional investors and decision-makers in business, commerce and industry are hard-headed people and will critically look for performance capabilities leading to prospects of adequate return.

Ms Banerji's Cabinet consists of talents of high calibre and they can all be pressed into service to make West Bengal an irresistibly attractive destination. On the US part, Ms. Clinton has expressed the hope that Kolkata would become an important hub in the new "Silk Road Strategy" to connect the countries of East, South and Central Asia. She seems to have also been appreciative of "the passion of (the State) government for work and in implementation of programmes in a mission mode."
Thus, all omens are propitious. Step on it, Didi, so West Bengal overtakes the rest of India

Tag: Real estate in kolkata, property in kolkata
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