PATNA: Heralding a new chapter in the industrial development of Bihar, the state’s first diamond processing unit was inaugurated at the Patliputra Industrial Area here on Thursday by chief minister Nitish Kumar. The unit has been set up by a leading diamond and jewellery firm of the country, Shrenuj and Company.
This unit throws open immense possibilities of a thriving diamond cutting and polishing industry in the state as about 30% of skilled workers in the diamond hub of Surat are said to belong to Bihar. The new unit currently employs 150 skilled Bihari artisans brought from Surat. When fully operational, the unit will employ 1,500 diamond workers, said Shrenuj’s group executive director, Vishal Doshi, on the occasion.
In his remarks at the inauguration ceremony, Nitish Kumar said:”We are happy that Doshi chose this state which sends skilled labour to the diamond industry of Surat and Mumbai,” the CM said, adding the diamond processing unit would make huge investment by using small space and generate employment.
Doshi also presented a diamond piece produced at the unit to the chief minister for display at Patna Museum.
The processing unit is located on the second floor of Bihar Industrial Area Development Authority (BIADA) building, which also houses the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) office on the ground and first floors. Soon, the BIS office will be shifted and the whole building will be handed over to the diamond unit. The unit will then have a capacity of handling three lakh diamond units per month.
“The event has marked an industrial revolution of sorts in Bihar,” said the chairman of Bihar Foundation Mumbai Chapter, Ravi Shankar Srivastava, who got fulsome praise from CM Nitish Kumar and deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi for his untiring effort to bring the unit here. Kumar also credited the Bihar Foundation for its efforts to set up a leather hub at Fatuha industrial area by utilizing the skilled leather workers of Dharavi, Mumbai.
Vishal Doshi said the processing unit in Patna will boost the exports of the company, which has direct access to rough diamonds from Botswana and South Africa. CMD Shreyas Doshi said that retail growth of gem and jewellery sector has been robust over the past decade. Shrenuj planned to increase its footprint in diamond jewellery retail in India.