Business panels trade charges ahead of summit

Last Updated: Tue, Jan 22, 2013 12:30 hrs

Agra, Jan 22 (IANS) City-based business organisations have accused the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) of sidelining them ahead of the three-day global partnership summit here starting Jan 27.

The National Chamber of Industries and Commerce said the CII had gone back on the number of local participants to be enlisted for the event. "They first suggested we bring in 500 to 600 local participants and now they are saying we can only allow around 150," Rajiv Tiwari, an office bearer of the chamber, told IANS.

"We have already collected cheques and admission forms. How can they go back on their commitment? It's an insult to the Agra business chamber," he said.

Local entrepreneurs say they may boycott the event. "Our pride is hurt," said Tiwari.

But Rajesh Gopinathan, CII representative, told IANS: "Only one chamber is engaged in creating negativity. The local industrialists should realise this is an international meet designed to attract investment to Uttar Pradesh."

"It appears the local chamber wants to use the summit to project its own local agenda of grievances because the top decision-makers of the state will be here for the summit," he said.

The CII partnership summit, organised jointly with the central and Uttar Pradesh governments, is aimed at showcasing the favourable investment climate in the state.

K.C. Jain, president of realtors association REDCO, meanwhile suggested truce in the larger interests of Agra and the tourism industry. "Such bickerings in the open only create negativity and tarnish Agra's name. The summit is an important international event and the participants are our guests," said Jain.

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