Mayapur: The Bengal chief minister, Mamata Banerjee, on Monday requested Iskcon devotee Ambarish Das , known as Alfred Ford, a great-grandson of Henry Ford to consider setting up an automobile manufacturing unit in Bengal.
Mamata made the request during her first ever visit to the international headquarters of the Iskcon in Mayapur. She urged Das if the Ford Motor Company where he is a board member could establish the manufacturing unit in Bengal like the one in Chennai.
“I requested him to invest in manufacturing industry in our state. He (the company) has such a factory in Chennai. A manufacturing unit here could be very beneficial for us. He has assured me of considering the proposal,” said Mamata, who, according to sources, also requested him to invest in the development on infrastructure in Nadia’s Mayapur, 120km from Calcutta.
Ford manufactures and exports vehicles and engines from its integrated manufacturing facilities in Chennai and Gujarat’s Sanand. The US motor giant, who re-entered the Indian market in 1995, has invested billions of dollars in the country.
Mamata and Das had an interaction in the Chandrodaya temple in Mayapur, where he and some senior Iskcon monks welcomed her. Das, 67, was initiated into Vaishnavism by Iskcon founder Srila Prabhupada, whom he met in Dallas in 1974.
Iskcon sources said, Das had assured the chief minister that he would consider the proposals. They said he, too, had requested the chief minister to help the Iskcon promote a world tourism circuit centre in Mayapur.