‘UPA considers aam aadmi concerns outdated’

Taking a dig at those championing FDI in retail, especially Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday said the UPA government considered the common man's concerns "outdated".

"We are from the grassroots, we represent the common man. And the common man is always backdated (outdated). I am proud to say we are with the people," she said after addressing the 85th Annual General Meeting of FICCI in Delhi.

In his address at the function earlier, the PM had said, "I am afraid those who oppose these moves (FDI) are either ignorant of global realities or are constrained by outdated ideologies." Mamata's remark was in response to that.

Making a spirited appeal to India Inc to invest in West Bengal, Mamata said her government has approved a land allotment policy to introduce transparency and it was for investors to "nurture the potential available in the state".

"People from Bengal have a lot of talent. Our talent work everywhere from NASA to bhasa, from computer to compounder. If you want to nurture it, invest in the state, don't worry," she said. "Labour is very cheap. We don't allow a factory to close down and strike as they earlier used to," she said, referring to the previous Left government resorting to strikes and lockouts.

Mamata clarified that land won't be acquired forcibly. "Sometime people say acquire the land, fire the people and then build industry. Industry can't be set up if there is disturbance, if there is goons and guns, but industry can only be set up in a peaceful manner in peaceful areas and co-exist with the common people."

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