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Last updated: Tuesday, April 30, 2002
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Atmosphere not right for Private Capital Investment in Bihar: Fernandes
Gaya, 2 April. The Defence Minister George Fernandes has said that the atmosphere is not right for development in Bihar in this era or private capital investment. But the state government is not successful in providing the secure environment in which private investment can take place. Mr George Fernandes was addressing the press after the ground breaking ceremony [bhumi puja] at the proposed new passenger terminal, technical block and fire station.
He said that by the end of the year Gaya International Airport would be on the map of international airports. He said that after the separation of Bihar from Jharkhand it was necessary to overcome factional tendencies and to advance together. Today, he said, was the era of private investment in the world. In Bihar private investment was needed but the atmosphere of security and administrative support for investment was not present. It was up to the state government to do something about this as at the moment there was no atmosphere of security in the state. There were speed breakers on every highway, and there were speadbreakers on the road to progress.
Addressing the meeting the [State?] Parks Minister M. Shah Nabaz Hussain said that from next year pilgrims from Bihar going on pilgrimage to Mecca would leave from Gaya airport. He said there were more airports in Bihar than any other state in India. There were some such as that passengers could get out of the plane and directly via into an airbridge into a terminal, whilst in Delhi and other cities passengers went via bus to the terminals. He said that the security at Gaya airport was the best in all Bihar and after works were completed it would be the largest in all of Northern India. Mr Hussain said that the airport was being reconstructed at a cost of 112 crores of rupees.[around 280 million US dollars-PGF].
The Central Coal and Mines Minister Ravishankar Prasad said that it was only through tourism that Bihar could develop. All that was needed was the desire to succeed and he appealed to the state government to take positive steps and to guarantee complete security to foreign tourists so that they could travel without fear around the sites of the state.
[the report continues in this vein with statements by the BJP State President Kailashpati Mishra and others.- the general gist of which is the state government should do more for the development of the state. There is also another report headed 'Congratulations on the ground puja and foundation stone laying ceremony for airport' which contains further homilies by various figures on importance of the airport for the future of Gaya. - PGF]

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Texts and Translations © Peter G. Friedlander unless otherwise indicated.