Mayor ropes in Sam Pitroda for Kolkata makeover

Kolkata, July 3 (IANS) Kolkata Mayor Shovan Chattopadhyay is all set to give a ‘London’ makeover to the City of Joy and for this he is roping in Sam Pitroda, an advisor to the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

‘Sam Pitroda will be coming to the city this month and we will have a meeting with him. We will interact with him regarding the various aspects to make Kolkata a better city than London to live in,’ Chattopadhyay told IANS.

Pitroda is advisor to the prime minister on public information, infrastructure and innovations with the rank of cabinet minister.

He is considered to be close to Trinamool Congress supremo and Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee. Banerjee during her last stint as the railway minister in 2001-02 had announced laying of optic fibre cables along rail tracks for commercial utilization.

The committee that was formed for laying of optic fibre was headed by Pitroda then. In July 2009, Banerjee announced the constitution of a fresh committee under him to suggest innovative methods to utilise the optic fibre cable network.

Asked if he was ready to talk to other city municipal corporations of the country for improving Kolkata, he said: ‘I am not only ready to talk with different corporations of various cities but also with civic bodies of foreign cities. I want to interact with them on various development projects.’

Chattopadhyay, 40, a loyalist of Trinamool chief Banerjee and a councillor since 1985, was elected as the 37th Mayor of Kolkata after the Trinamool defeated the Left Front in the civic election.

He said to conserve the heritage buildings of Kolkata he would analyse each and every case and then take a decision.

‘I will analyse each and every case of heritage buildings of Kolkata. I will not let the heritage buildings of Kolkata go in wrong hands. I will do everything to preserve the heritage of Kolkata,’ Chattopadhyay said.

When told that most of the heritage buildings are surrounded by shops, which create hurdles for conservation, he said: ‘We will look into each case and then decide on it.’

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