Friday, October 31, 2008

An Open Letter to Mr Ratan Tata

25 October 2008

Dear Tata-ji

Thanks for your enlightening “open letter” which appeared in a section of the press on 17 October this year. But for this letter, we would never know that you were cherishing a noble “dream of contributing to the industrial revival of West Bengal” – our hapless state, which is foolish enough to disrupt your dream by a “politically motivated” agitation that finally forced your Nano out.

As a young boy in the early 1960s, I would look at the sky-high Tata Centre in Calcutta (Kolkata), awestruck. I was sure that my audacious eyes would never be able to straddle the Centre’s height, to try to touch the firmament. And now, at the age of 55, I once again understand that the experience and education I have gained meanwhile is too small to gauge the depth of your intelligence and imagination.

Two years ago, you had embarked on a small car project at Singur because you had “tremendous” faith in the policies of the West Bengal government, led by Mr Buddhadev Bhattacharjee. I wonder what made you so sure that Mr Bhattacharjee and his cohorts represent the public sentiments of the entire population! You never cared to probe the public mind of West Bengal since you entered into a secret deal with the state government over the said project.

In your letter, you have held out the prosperity that your project could usher in by creating jobs, providing livelihood to the local people and thus “enhancing” the quality of their lives. But why didn’t you make a clean breast of your plan and project to make the imbeciles that we are see how generous you are; to realise that while we are only fond of agitation, you stand for benediction? Why did you rather go to court to prevent the terms and conditions of the deal from coming to light? You have advised us to express our “views and aspirations” as to the future of West Bengal. Being a “good, contributing, corporate citizen”, why didn’t you set the example yourself?

You certainly remember the inaugural chapter of your Nano tragedy, scripted on 2 December 2006. The Singur peasants refused to part with their farm land – the source of their living. The police went on the rampage, pounced upon them and forcibly occupied the fertile land for your project, in your name. Sorry Tata-ji, we are too callous to understand how benevolent you are! By virtue of your wisdom, you have finally chosen the right “M”, but alas, our experience continues to misguide us by (mis)taking “T” for terror, rather than your celebrated surname.

With best wishes,

Sandip Bandyopadhyay


prabuddha said...

hats off to SANDIPDA ! i can recall one poem of Birendra Chattopadhyay on SAMAR SEN right in this context where it was stated that when all the sycophants have gone to royal court for hawking their trashes, it is you who are standing alone and facing all odds ("sobai jokhon rajbaritey bechtey gelen danter majon/apni tokhon" ....etc). i think it is almost like this. it seems that saying no to "nano" at singur by ratn-ji is a fatal curse to state economy and grooming process of industrialisation and there is hardly any opinion which can counter the blatant and deceptive stories.this reaction is a justified rejoinder to the entire fact. the interesting part of the nano-story is that ultimately ratan-ji has chosen two CM-s in the country as his favourites . our hapless west bengal may be proud of that selection where it has been placed in the same rank with gujrat. we can well recall that a "royal"(also "loyal") bengali poet had expressed deep anguish over a tv channel one year back when the organisers of the "mohamichil" on 15th november2007 had written poster mentioning "buddha" & "modi" as identical. now ratan-ji had marked them as rider of the same boat , will the poet rectify his "historic mistake" ?

Nila-kantha-chandra said...

Hello Pabuddha, thanks for your visit and comment. I have communicated your comment to Sandip. Sandip and I are old comrades.

bagchipar said...

i have heard it from sandipda that you have communicated my reaction to him. basically the writing of sandipda has touched me as i was also very much displeased over the comments of ratan tata. but i have hardly any scope to react in writing . sandipda has done it in right time and basically it represents the collective criticism of us in proper tune.