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West Bengal News 2016

 Assembly Elections 2016: West Bengal

      Mamta Banerjee

Kolkata, March 1 , 2016: West Bengal will be one among the four states going to the Assembly elections this year; the other four being Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.  The Asembly election in Bengal will be held in six phases over seven days---the most for any state this year---and it will begin on April 4
and conclude on May 5. The results will be declared on May 19, along with the three other states and the Union Territory of Puducherry.

Total Assembly seats: 294, spread over 20 districts [Total Lok Sabha seats 42]. Reserved seats: 68 for Scheduled Castes and 16 for Scheduled Tribes

Polling phases: 6 (seven days) : Polling dates:

Phase 1: Day 1: April 4 [Monday]
Phase 1: Day 2: April 11 [Monday]
Phase 2: April 17 [Sunday]
Phase 3: April 21 [Thursday]
Phase 4: April 25 [Monday]
Phase 5: April 30 [Saturday]
Phase 6: May 5 [Thursday]

*Results:* May 19 [Thursday]

Date-wise seats going to polls:

April 4: 18 constituencies
April 11: 31 constituencies
April 17: 56 constituencies
April 21: 62 constituencies
April 25: 49 constituencies
April 30: 53 constituencies
May 5: 25 constituencies

Total voters: 6.55 crore. Total polling booths: 77,247  Chief Electoral Officer: Sunil Kumar Gupta 



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West Bengal tea units hail new Bill

       Tea garden

KOLKATA, June 24, 2015: The State tea industry expects to get some relief through the West Bengal Tea Plantation Employees’ Welfare Fund Bill 2015, which it saw as a unique initiative, where the State is willing to partner the industry to promote workers welfare.

The Act envisages the setting up of an Rs.100-crore fund. This would be utilised in three ways. It could be used for providing interest subvention (a form of interest subsidy), and/or matching grants to employers as soft loans which the tea gardens would have to invest in social welfare schemes.

A second component is provision of scholarship to the children of tea garden employees. The third critical component pertains to sick or closed gardens.

The West Bengal tea industry is not expecting the bill to make any significant dent to its cost structure on account of compliance to the Plantation Labour Act (PLA), 1951, which requires garden owners to provide certain amenities to tea plantation workers. But they are happy that “for the first time the State has offered to partner the industry in respect of the social welfare cost.”

The industry said that it would now await the modalities, which are expected to follow a gazette notification. West Bengal is India’s second largest tea growing State, after Assam.Its three tea regions — Darjeeling, Terai and Doors — account for a quarter of India’s 1,100-odd million kg tea crop.

There are some 283 registered tea estates, which employ 2.62 lakh workers. The total population in the garden is over 11.2 lakh.

The amenities that industry is required to provide include free housing, medical facilities, primary education, potable water, sanitation and creche, besides concessional electricity, foodgrains, fire-wood,footwear and the like. Source: thehindu.com

 

 Bengal plans first heritage city in Bishnupur

      Bishnupur

Kolkata, June 13, 2015: Famous for its medieval terracotta temples and glorious past, Bishnupur town in West Bengal is now being planned as the state’s first heritage city. Currently, the narrow gauge Darjeeling Himalayan Railway and Sundarbans National Park are two sites in West Bengal which have been declared as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

We want to make it big by including its outskirts and developing it as West Bengal’s first planned heritage city,” Prabhakar Pal, additional director at West Bengal’s Directorate of Archaeology and Museums, said. He said the Centre had recently accepted the state’s recommendation to declare Bishnupur as a heritage city.

With support from the state’s tourism department and urban development ministry, they are planning a massive integrated project to develop infrastructure like improved road connectivity, museums, parks, hotels, etc. “We will seek funds for this from the 14th Finance Commission which will be used for conservation of heritage sites and infrastructure development,” the official said.

Around 150 km away from Kolkata by road, Bishnupur was the seat of power for Malla dynasty, which built the famous terracotta temples during the 17th and 18th centuries. The pre-colonial historical town in Bankura district is full of sculptures and relics from the past. A seat of crafts and culture, Bishnupur attracts tourists for its Baluchari sarees, terracotta toys and ethnic symbols like the Bankura horse. The Malla kings had also patronised music and established the Bishnupur Gharana centuries ago.

The cluster of temples in Bishnupur include Malleshwar temple, Rasmancha, Jorbangla, Radhashyam, ShyamRai, Madan Mohan, Lalji temple, etc. The temples are known for their distinct architecture style of a single tower resting on a square building with the curved roof of a Bengali hut. Source: PTI

 

  
 

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