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Kolkata to be London Soon

The state urban development department is working hard to give wings to the chief minister's dream of turning Kolkata into London. It has identified a two-acre plot belonging to the Kolkata Port Trust on the Hooghly river side for the much ambitious Kolkata eye project - modelled on the lines of London eye.
State urban development minister Firhad Hakim said they were working to implement the project soon. "Once we are able to get the plot, a project report (DPR) will be prepared, following which the expression of interest (EOI) will be floated to invite private players to execute the project," Hakim said on Wednesday.

The state government had earlier written to the ministry of shipping to allow KoPT to auction off the two-acre plot on Strand Road so that the state government could buy it. The port authorities have also agreed to the proposal as that will mean funds to pay pension.

Earlier, the state government had discussed the project with representatives of a UK-based companies at Writers' Buildings. The government is keen on implementing the project on public-private-partnership (PPP) basis.

The Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) along with the Kolkata Municipal Corporation is already working on the riverfront beautification project that was launched by the chief minister. Mamata wants to develop the Hooghly river side on the lines of river Thames in London. There are also plans to extend the Millennium Park. The first phase that spreads from Princep Ghat to Baje Kadamtala Ghat (near Babughat) has already been inaugurated by the CM.

Apart from the Kolkata eye plan, which is also aimed to attract tourists, the state government is also working to attract tourists to the coastal areas of Digha and Shankarpur. In the latest meeting on the city's beautification, chaired by the chief minister at Writers Buildings, it was decided that the state government will celebrate World Tourism Day on September 27. The celebrations will be based on the theme 'Dream - Green and Clean' and will be held at Digha. The plan has already been discussed by the Digha Shankarpur Development Authority (DSDA).

A meeting with the district magistrate and local SDO will be held soon to further discuss the matter. At present, the DSDA is working on several plans including sprucing up of the civic infrastructure to develop the coastal areas of Digha, Shankarpur and Mandarmani as attractive tourist spots.

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