Bengal Governor asks Amit Mitra to bring white paper on investments received from business summits

Jagdeep Dhankhar has alleged that the former West Bengal finance minister's misplaced eloquent economic optical illusions have been a heavy drain on Bengal's development

Press Trust of India November 20, 2021 18:20:04 IST
Bengal Governor asks Amit Mitra to bring white paper on investments received from business summits

File photo of West Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankar. Twitter

Kolkata: West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Saturday asked Amit Mitra to come out with a white paper on details of investments received from five editions of Bengal Global Business Summit (BGBS), alleging that the former state finance minister's "misplaced eloquent economic optical illusions have been a heavy drain on development".

He also questioned why were the BGBS details hidden after assertions of "resounding success". Mitra, who has been appointed chief economic advisor to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee after he relinquished the finance portfolio recently, had refuted Dhankhar's accusation that he had not responded to queries on investments proposed in the five editions of BGBS, saying he had given details of these in a letter to the governor.

"Your reliance on four-page communication is misplaced as it does not in the least even advert to the five issues flagged, much less render response," the governor wrote in a letter to Mitra on Friday.

Dhankhar and Mitra have been engaged in a verbal duel over the success of the business summits. "There just can be no rationale for not rendering details of the much projected investment of over Rs 12.30 lac crores in five BGBS editions. Why hide BGBS details after assertions of 'resounding success'!" the governor wrote.

"Why not reveal achievements and expenses qua each BGBS event since 2016 as regards actual investment made, and jobs created?," Dhankhar said.

He asked Mitra to come out with "full disclosure on BGBS" at the earliest by way of a white paper.

"Sought response @DrAmitMitra as his misplaced eloquent economic optical illusions have been a heavy drain on development, transparency and accountability in the state," Dhankhar tweeted on Saturday along with a copy of the letter to Mitra.

For investment, governance must be in "accord with constitutional norms and with respect to democratic values and human rights", he wrote on the microblogging site.

"The situation on all these counts, as is open secret, is far from satisfactory," he said.

Dhankhar had on November 9 called upon the Mamata Banerjee government to come out with a white paper on BGBS with details of investments attracted from the business summits and expressed concern at the alleged lack of response from the then state finance minister on the information sought by him in August last year.

He had attached a copy of his letter to the chief minister dated August 25, 2020, along with his tweet.

Mitra too posted the copy of his four-page letter written on September 24, 2020, in reply to the governor's queries and questioned whether he was "suffering from amnesia".

The former finance minister described the governor's tweet on business summits as "a classic case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde".

The two names, the two alter egos of the main character in the 1886 book by Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson, have become over the years shorthand for contradictory behaviour.

The Trinamool Congress government is preparing for holding another edition of BGBS early next year.

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