Salboni : West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday virtually served  an ultimatum to Sajjan Jindal-promoted JSW Bengal Steel to start work on the integrated steel-cum-power plant at Salboni in West Midnapore district.

At a public function held in the area, Banerjee warned that if the JSW group did not construct the plant, the government would take away the land and give it to other investors.

She also asked the Jindals to pay land-losers.

“Before coming here, I have told the Jindals that the 400 families who gave up their  land for the project be paid Rs 5,000 each per month till they are given employment in the project,” Banerjee said.

“Moreover, the project has to be started soon. If the industry (by JSW) is not set up, we will establish an alternate industry,” Banerjee warned.

There could be a major industry on such huge land of 4,000 acres which would create a large number of jobs, she said.

JSW group had signed an agreement with the then Left Front government in 2007 for setting up a steel plant with a capacity of 10 mtpa at a cost of Rs 35,000 crore for which the government allotted 4,500 acre.

However, no substantial progress was made for setting up the plant. The then chief minister, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, had laid the project’s foundation stone on  November 2, 2008.

When Bhattacherjee was returning after laying the foundation stone, a bomb, planted by Maoists, went off minutes after his convoy passed the spot.

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