Shapoorji Pallonji"s Bengal plans

Shapoorji Pallonji Group, one of India’s biggest infrastructure conglomerates, is keen to make a big investment in Bengal. Its chairman Shapoor Mistry called on chief minister Mamata Banerjee and promised to pump in over Rs 20,000 crore to spruce up the state’s shoddy infrastructure. The proposal came a day after cash-strapped Bengal got central clearance for a Rs 900-crore Asian Development Bank loan to revamp its rural roads.
Mistry’s Bengal trip gains significance as his family connections have triggered speculation about a possible solution to the Singur impasse. The buzz in the city’s business circles is that the visit of Mistry —the elder brother of Tata Group chairman-elect Cyrus P Mistry — could be a precursor to a possible out-of-court settlement between Tata Motors and the state government on the Nano compound that has remained deserted since the small car project was shifted to Sanand in Gujarat in 2008. Mistry did not answer when reporters asked him what message he would convey to his brother.
State officials, however, described the speculation as mere “kite flying” as the Bengal government has already moved the Supreme Court in the Singur case. The assembly passed a bill allowing the state to return land acquired for the project to farmers, but the bill was declared unconstitutional and void by the Calcutta high court.
The SP Group chairman spent an hour talking to Mamata, state finance minister Amit Mitra and commerce and industries minister Partha Chatterjee at the CM’s chamber in Writers’ Buildings, indicating he was not apprehensive of the ground realities in Bengal, like the state’s hands-off policy on land acquisition.

Shapoorji Pallonji is the single-largest shareholder in Tata Sons with 18% stake It has investments in construction, real estate, textiles, engineering goods, home appliances, shipping and power Shapoorji may invest in New Town SEZ: Partha
Mistry said the group had already invested Rs 1,000 crore in Bengal and was looking for more avenues. The $2.5-billion SP Group has a presence in the state’s real estate and IT sectors. “We are not new to the state. We are looking at projects like deep sea port, hydel power plant, IT park, roads in the Hills and plains,” Mistry said. “Universal Success of Prasoon Mukherjee will join hands with us in some projects,” he said.
 Commerce and industries minister Partha Chatterjee said the group could pump in Rs 12,000 crore in the deep sea port. “It is also looking at the hydel power sector in North Bengal and tidal wave-based hydel projects in South 24-Parganas, at a time when the state has a bad generation mix (96% thermal and 4% hydel as highlighted during Tuesday’s grid failure). The group is also keen on investing in the IT SEZ at New Town,” Chatterjee said. The SP Group has 55 acres in the IT SEZ. It was Mistry’s first visit to Kolkata after he took over as CMD of the group.

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