FICCI Secretary General, Amit Mitra has joined the Trinamool Congress and is contesting the 2011 West Bengal Assembly Election from Khardah. He was also appointed as the chairman of Railway Expert Committee by the Trinamool Supremo and India's Railway Minister. This blog features Mitra's politico-ideological inclinations and pose some questions to the Trinamool Congress on these issues. (Attached photo captures Amit Mitra with US Ambassador Timothy J. Roemer, courtsey: Flickr & Google Images).
Amit Mitra’s political training in RSS’ student wing ABVP:
“FICCI secretary general Amit Mitra had his early grounding in the BJP-affiliated Akhil Bharatiya Vidya Parishad (ABVP) and can call a number of BJP leaders as his friends”
(The Financial Express, 14th May, 2004): Click Here
Q: Why has Trinamool Congress nominated a person like Amit Mitra, who has ‘early grounding’ in ABVP and is politically close to BJP?
Amit Mitra opposed the agitation against Tata Motors Plant in Singur:
“The Tata project could have brought about a major change in the industrial scenario in the state. This was not a one-off auto project, but would have given a boost to a host of ancillaries as well.”
(Rediff.com, 4th October, 2008): Click Here
Q. Has Amit Mitra changed his position vis-à-vis Singur OR has the Trinamool changed its position?
Amit Mitra supports FDI in Retail:
“FICCI Secretary General Amit Mitra suggests ushering in retail FDI with a stipulation that large retailers will procure a major part of their supplies locally and work closely with farmers in imparting better knowhow.”
(India Today, internet version: 11th April, 2011): Click Here
“To increase the share of organised retail…Ficci has advocated a multi-pronged strategy that includes relaxing the foreign direct investment norms, grant of industry status to retail, simplification of the tax structure, upgrade of manpower skills and a check on counterfeiting…‘Archaic laws and regulations should be done away with’ said FICCI president Amit Mitra.”
(Business Standard, 23rd April, 2007): Click Here
Q. Why has Trinamool nominated a supporter of FDI in Retail when it stated in its 2009 Lok Sabha Manifesto that it is opposed to the entry of MNCs in retail trade?
Amit Mitra advocates SEZs:
“A few land agitations or a few denotifications sought by a handful of developers cannot and should not detract from the success of the SEZ policy in the country. Besides, while there may be agitations in Bengal or Orissa, there are absolutely no agitations in Tamil Nadu or Gujarat over SEZs.”
(The Telegraph, Kolkata; 28th June, 2009): Click Here
Q. Why has an ardent supporter of SEZs been nominated as a candidate of the Trinamool, which claims to be the ‘anti-SEZ’ party according to its 2009 Lok Sabha Manifesto (p. 33, p. 35)? Has Trinamool now become a pro-SEZ party?
Amit Mitra supports Hire and Fire:
FICCI’s position on Labour Reforms: “by flexible labour laws, FICCI did not just mean freedom to hire and fire labour, but also enabling contract labour.”
(Business Line, 21st January, 2001): Click Here
“Amit Mitra, secretary-general of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, said labour reforms were a must to give a thrust to Indian economy.”
(Rediff.com, 10th September, 2001): Click Here
Q. Why has Trinamool nominated a candidate who wants to push anti-labour changes in labour laws?
Amit Mitra is a Neoliberal Hawk:
A Duke University Newsletter report titled “Mitra Urges Indian Liberalization” reported that he had set up a ‘think tank’ whose purpose was “to push the government of India to liberalize the Indian economy.”
(Economics at Duke Newsletter, Vol. 14, No. 2, Summer 1993): Click Here
Q. Does the Trinamool share Amit Mitra’s vision of liberalization and neoliberal reforms?
Amit Mitra batted for Enron:
“You will be happy to know that I personally went on CNN and condemned the cancellation of the Enron deal” (Rediff.com, 1st November, 1996): Click Here
Q: Why is Trinamool backing a supporter of a fraud company like Enron?
Amit Mitra is close to the American establishment:
“ ‘We know Bush is good for India. But in Kerry's case we would have been hopeful that he would be good for India’, says Amit Mitra, secretary-general, FICCI”
(India Today, 15th November, 2004): Click Here
“We have political comfort with the Bush administration.”
(Rediff.com, 30th September, 2005): Click Here
Q. Is Amit Mitra the link between the Trinamool and the US administration?
AMIT MITRA IS NOT MERELY A CANDIDATE CONTESTING ON TRINAMOOL CONGRESS TICKET
HE REPRESENTS THE REAL NEOLIBERAL FACE OF THE TMC:
HIDDEN UNDER THE GARB OF POPULIST DEMAGOGY