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The City
The sprawling metropolis of Kolkata flanks the river Hooghly just before it meets the sea, and carries a legacy its 14 million residents are justifiably proud of. The capital city of the Indian State of West Bengal and Eastern India's first city has retained its status as the commercial and financial hub in the region, in spite of a apathetic approach to development in the past.

Highlighted as India's fastest growing cities today, the turnaround from the "dying" city tag has been remarkable. Well-known for its academic and cultural pursuits, the city is now cashing on its highly literate and well-informed populace for a comeback with a vengeance.

The city's links within and outside the region have long been established through rail, road and air. This has fostered a tolerant, multi-cultural migrant population comprising communities from not just India, but even overseas, with Armenians, Chinese, Jews, Tibetans co-existing peacefully with Parsis, Marwaris, Biharis, Sikhs and of course, Bengalis.

Giving Kolkata a fresh lease of life is the information technology sector in the city. IT has spawned 'commercialism' amongst the city residents, and encouraged the retail and real estate market to a level where investors are eager to invest in Kolkata.

Real estate Agents in Kolkata have responded to the growing demand with quality projects which have elevated the lifestyle of the people of Kolkata, in retail, commercial or residential sector.

Infrastructure and Facilities
The Government of West Bengal has set aside Rs. 3,430 for developing social infrastructure alone. Kolkata pioneered the metro rail in India, which connects the north-south ends of the city from DumDum to Tollygunge in 45 minutes. The Central Business District from Esplanade and BBD Bagh, or Dalhousie, as it is still popularly known, is barely 25 minutes from these suburbs.

Indonesia's Salim Group stirred the property market in 2006 with its collaboration with Unitech and Universal Success Group for a multi-product SEZ, a mega-chemical industrial estate, and an industrial estate for small and medium enterprises. It has also been roped in for investments in an expressway, bridges, townships, and commercial blocks for land losers, training institutes, health city and a knowledge city, set to be completed in 15 years.

Real estate giant Unitech has plans also for Rs. 4000 crore to be spent on infrastructure projects - roads, bridges, of which Rs.1, 600 crore is dedicated to the third Hooghly bridge, connecting Raichur and Haldia.

Also on the anvil are 2 roads-cum-flyovers for East Kolkata linking Basanti Road to the Eastern Metropolitan Bypass and the airport. Slated for completion by March 2008 at a cost of 55 crore, the 4 km. link to the EM Bypass, to be laid by the Kolkata Municipal Corporation will include a flyover on the route.

Basanti Road's connectivity to the airport will be further improved with the 6 km. link to be built by Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation, avoiding the EM Bypass and VIP Road.

Enjoying a high literacy rate of 81%, the city is known for its excellent academic standards and institutions of repute. Missionary and private schools like Loreto, St. Xavier's, Don Bosco, St. James, St. Joseph's and the Birla group of schools impart quality education comparable with some of the best schools in India.

Graduate and post graduate courses in regular, vocational and professional streams are offered by a multitude of colleges. Calcutta University, Indian Institute of Management, Directorate of Marine Engineering Technology, Indian Statistical Institute, Bose Institute, Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics and Jadavpur University has students vying for seats from across the country and abroad.

State-of-the art medical facilities, both public and privately run, are available to all sections of society. Being the ideal destination for shopper's, Kolkata's delectable cuisine, and the very happening cultural scene, makes the city an ideal choice for a second home in India.



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