With the Congress and the SAD-BJP gearing up for the Lok Sabha polls scheduled next year, suddenly the focus of both parties has become the all-powerful industrial lobby in state's financial capital.
After the Congress MP and union minister for information and broadcasting Manish Tewari invited union MSME minister KH Muniyappa to Ludhiana on October 16 to woo the Micro Small and Medium Industry (MSME) industrialists, it is now deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal who will try to do the same by interacting directly with the MSME lobby and listening their issues during his visit to the city on November 15.
In a first of its kind interaction with the industrialists with the deputy CM, all officials concerned of the industry have also been invited to the venue, Abeda Palace on Hambran Road, to ensure the seriousness of holding the interaction.
Sources said the deputy CM, who will launch his dream project 'Mission Ludhiana' on November 15 by laying the foundation stone of various projects, is likely to make certain announcements, in a bid to show his concern for the industry.
Sources also said that the motive behind making this arrangement was also to counter the strategy of union minister Manish Tewari, who invited union MSME minister to Ludhiana but failed to make any announcement to provide relief to this segment of the entrepreneurs.
“Special instructions have been conveyed from the deputy CM office to ensure that all associations relating to MSME industry participate in the interaction,” head of the district industrial centre (DIC), Mahesh Khanna told Hindustan Times.
On Tuesday, the DIC would also hold meeting of all associations of industrialists in the MSME sector and they have been asked to submit their memorandum of demands citing their issues.
Director of industries department is also personally monitoring the arrangements for the interaction, in which the industries minister Madan Mohan Mittal and revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia would also participate.
“The demands of the industry has been invited in advance so that during the interaction the deputy CM gets a fair idea on how to address their issues,” the DIC head said.
Notably, Sukhbir would also give a power point presentation informing his plans for Ludhiana under 'Mission Ludhiana' on the occasion.
He is also likely to roll out special features of Punjab investors' meet scheduled in December in SAS Nagar.
Meanwhile, the industrial associations have welcomed the move to give chance to directly raise their issues with the deputy CM.
“It would be good for the MSME industry, as the industrialists are under stress. The state has hardly left any scope for our development by imposing heavy taxes. Moreover, Centre's failure to put check on increasing cheap import from China has broken the backbone of MSME in Ludhiana especially the cycle parts industry,” president of Federation of Associations of Small Industries in India (FASII) said.