After successfully persuading Ratan Tata to locate Tata Motors's small car project in Hooghly district's Singur area, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya said on Tuesday that he could not possibly ask him to go back.
"I cannot tell Ratan Tata to go back", the chief minister said while speaking at the annual general meeting of Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Kolkata.
"We must go ahead." The chief minister expressed regret at the behaviour of Opposition Trinamool Congress. "How can a government function with an irresponsible Opposition?" he said.
Tata Motors had already decided to set up the plant in Uttaranchal, he said. After much persuasion, Tata Motors had decided to visit four or five sites in the state, after which Singur was finally selected, he added.
"Ratan Tata told me that Singur was the preferred site for the project. How can I say no to him", he asked.
The move however, had led Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee to undertake a hunger strike, which entered the 23rd day on Tuesday, demanding re-location of the plant from Singur's multi-crop land to any other area in the state which was not so fertile.
Bhattacharya said he was ready to discuss anything under the sun with Banerjee and also urged her to call off the hunger strike. "This has already sent a wrong message", he said.