Webel’s ambitious Information Technology Park near Gandhi More of Durgapur, inaugurated by the former chief minister of Bengal, Mr. Budhhadeb Bhattacharya in 2010 has finally found a taker after almost three years of wait. Essar Oil Ltd, one of the leaders in Indian non-conventional energy sector entrusted with exploration and production of Coal Bed Methane (CBM), in and around Durgapur, has come to Webel’s rescue by taking possession of 32,000 square feet of the total 100,000 square feet area available in the technology park.
The park, spread over 2.21 acres near Gandhi More of Durgapur, offers one lakh square-feet area for IT and ITeS units and was inaugurated by former chief minister Budhhadeb Bhattacharya, on 29th November 2010. However, after the Trinamool Congress came to power state industry minister Mr. Partha Chatterjee re-inaugurated the park on 17th January 2012.
Webel plans to set up 26 such IT parks and had been seeking active participation of big IT firms but without success.
Mr. Partha Chatterjee, Minister of Commerce & Industries, West Bengal, yesterday inaugurated the Essar Oil Ltd’s Exploration & Production (E&P) office at the WEBEL IT Park near Gandhi More of Durgapur, for its CBM operations.
Essar’s bid to open offices at the IT park has, however, triggered a controversy. Mr Rathin Roy, former Durgapur Mayor and CPI-M’s state committee member, criticised the decision saying: “It’s most unfortunate that an oil company is setting up offices in such a prestigious park which was exclusively meant to woo IT firms. It appears the government has failed to get adequate response from reputed IT firms.”
The industry minister, Mr. Chatterjee, however, claimed: “This was not in contravention to the purpose of the IT park. Essar will be synchronizing, synthesizing and analyzing data collected from its various pits operating across its working blocks. This is definitely an IT-enabled work.”
Essar Oil officials on the other hand said that the infrastructure at Webel IT Park will be used by Essar Oil team and will house technologically advanced instruments to run its CBM operations in CBM gas fields in Raniganj block in the state. The infrastructure at the technology park will include a resource centre for Coal Bed Methane interests and all other unconventional energy resource ventures including shale gas. It will be equipped with data gathering and processing facilities for geo-modeling, control rooms, board room equipped with audio and video conferencing facilities, library and a food court.
Mr Apoorva Ranjan, project director (E&P division), Essar, said: “This world-class workplace will be used by the team and will house advanced instruments to help run our coal bed methane (CBM) operations across Raniganj block.”