Mamata opposes dissolving of BIFR

Kolkata, Jan 6 (IANS) Opposing the Narendra Modi government’s decision to dissolve the Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR), West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday said the central government is “breaking the spine” of the country’s economy.

“BIFR was constituted for reconstruction of industries and protection of workers. Sick industries registered in the Board could reconstruct their assets and run the company accordingly. Suddenly, the centre dissolved it,” she said.

“They are breaking the spine of the country,” said Banerjee adding that centre sent a letter to her government.

The letter sent to West Bengal Chief Secretary said that BIFR and its appellate body, the Appellate Authority for Industrial Finance and Reconstruction (AAIFR), which were entrusted with the revival and rehabilitation of sick industrial companies under the Sick Industrial Companies (Special Provisions) Act 1985, has been dissolved.

Banerjee said, “We have a lot of companies registered in the Board. We have asked what would happen to old cases. They said fresh application are needed.”

“All pending cases before BIFR and AAIFR stand abated. These companies can file fresh cases for insolvency resolution under the Code (the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016) before NCLT (National Company Law Tribunal),” the letter said.

Trade unions also alleged the decision was taken without consulting them.

“It was a blow to the workers. The board was dissolved without taking consultation from trade unions. We will put up a fight against the move,” said Ramen Pandey, state president of Congress backed Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC).

“The decision proved that central government has been run by a dictator,” said Trinamool Congress’ union leader Sovandeb Chattopadhyay.