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BJP and Trinamool clash over Britannia's decision to close historic Kolkata factory

Following the news that Britannia Industries Limited was closing its historic factory in Kolkata's Taratala neighbourhood, West Bengal BJP chairman Sukanta Majumdar accused chairman Minister Mamata Banerjee of having a "anti-industry image".

Reported by:  PTC News Desk  Edited by:  Annesha Barua -- June 25th 2024 10:28 AM -- Updated: June 25th 2024 10:33 AM
BJP and Trinamool clash over Britannia's decision to close historic Kolkata factory

BJP and Trinamool clash over Britannia's decision to close historic Kolkata factory

PTC News Desk: Britannia Industries Limited, located in the Taratala neighborhood of Kolkata, announced on Monday that its historic factory will be closing. The Trinamool Congress was blamed by the BJP for the unit's shutdown, while the ruling party in West Bengal said internal management problems inside the company was to blame.

Not only was the Britannia facility one of the company's oldest, having been established in 1947, but it also held historical significance as one of its second production facilities in India. In addition to having an impact on the city's economy, the decision leaves many workers with uncertain futures.


Union Minister and head of the West Bengal BJP Sukanta Majumdar chastised the state government, stating, "There is an anti-industry image and a party that always extorts. Industry will not come in the presence of a party that does these things."

BJP IT cell chairman Amit Malviya laid the blame for the factory's closure on both the previous Left administrations and the current Trinamool Congress (TMC) in a post on X. He said, "Today's shutdown of Britannia Industries' factory starkly epitomises the descent of Bengal — a region once renowned for its cultural richness and intellectual prowess -- into profound disarray."

Malviya went on to say, "The CPI(M)'s ubiquitous 'Unionbaji' caused the Britannia factory, which was once a symbol of industrial vitality in Bengal, to suffer significant attrition during the Left regime." The last straw that finally caused the factory to collapse was TMC's unrelenting "Tolabaji." Bengal is already in a terrible jobless situation brought on by the TMC's extortion and syndicate, but the factory's collapse has put the region in even worse shape.

TMC chief Kunal Ghosh responded by disputing the claims and highlighting the fact that Britannia's internal management problems were the cause of the shutdown.

"They have certain problems with how they are managing the relevant industrial organization. Those who are combining it with the state's general industrial predicament are acting improperly. The production of biscuits has led to the establishment of numerous new enterprises in the state and the creation of jobs for a large number of people. An organisation's management will investigate if problems are limited to a single branch, according to Ghosh.

WHY THE TARTALA FACTORY IS HIDDEN

In May of last year, the Taratala factory, a significant landmark in the industrial history of Kolkata, shut down. According to Britannia's most recent announcement, the plant has been completely shut down as part of the company's strategic realignment to maximize output and improve operational effectiveness.

About 250 contract workers and 122 permanent employees—many of whom have worked at the factory for more than ten years—are impacted by the shutdown.

The impacted employees have received news of Britannia's closure, along with an offer of a lump-sum settlement. Permanent workers with more over ten years of service are expected to receive Rs 22 lakhs, while those with just seven years would get Rs 18 lakhs.

Concerns over the shutdown have been raised by industry insiders and the local population, underscoring a larger change in Kolkata's industrial scene.

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- With inputs from agencies

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