Army, Bengal government to study army's land requirement
The army and the West Bengal government will carry out a joint feasibility study soon on the military's requirement of land in the state's northern regions, the defence ministry said Monday.
This was decided at the annual Civil Military Liaison Conference (CMLC) attended by the state's top bureaucrats and senior army officers during the day.
The meeting at the temporary state secretariat -- Nabanna Complex in Howrah district -- saw both sides resolving to deal with several issues relating to the army's land requirement in various locations for operational reasons.
It also discussed the welfare of the ex-servicemen in the state.
The meeting noted that the process of transfer of land for the NCC Directorate (West Bengal and Sikkim) at Bamchandaipur in lieu of land at Sadhanpur, Burdwan, was now in its final stage.
The joint inspection would be carried out for the other projects.
General Officer Commanding (GOC) Bengal Area Lt. Gen. A.K. Choudhary, who chaired the conference along with state Chief Secretary Sanjay Mitra, urged the state government for assistance in providing about 700 sq yd of land to help set up proper Ex Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) Polyclinics operating out of non-military stations.
The chief secretary assured the army authorities that a meeting would soon be held among the state government, home ministry and the local authorities for establishing a new Sainik School at Darjeeling.
The government also agreed to enhance financial assistance to World War II veterans, war widows and gallantry award winners to bring the facilities at par with other states after due procedures.
Lt. Gen. Choudhary requested the state to provide suitable incentives such as one-time financial grant as given by some states like Odisha to motivate youths to join the armed forces in the officer cadre.
Currently, West Bengal has a 7.81 percent representation in the armed forces.
(Posted on 18-11-2013)