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250 diamond merchants from Mumbai and Surat open trading offices SDB

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SURAT : Around 250 diamond merchants from Mumbai and Surat opened their trading offices at Surat Diamond Bourse (SDB) on the occasion of Ashadi Beej on Sunday. The traders who opened their offices included SDB Chairman and Vice-Chairman Govind Dholakia, who is also a BJP Rajya Sabha MP, Lalji Patel and Vallabhbhai Lakhani.

“We have opened our office (Dharmanandan Diamonds)… SDB chairman Govind Dholakia opened his firm Shree Ramkrishna’s export office. Seven other renowned diamond firms also opened their offices on Sunday,” SDB vice-chairman Lalji Patel told.

“At present, interior work is going on in 500 offices. Once the work is finished, those offices will also open. We are hopeful that by Diwali, 1,000 offices will open at SDB,” he added.

Patel further said that a dedicated “customs house” will open at SDB in the next 10 to 15 days, handling all export and import activities at the bourse.

“While GJEPC (Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council) has already inaugurated its office at SDB, banks are eager to open their offices. We are also planning to set up small cubicles for diamond brokers coming from Varachha and Mahidharpura, so that they can run their business,” Patel said, adding with the help of Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC), the SDB has already started bus services from the diamond colonies of Varachha and Katargam to Khajod, where the bourse is located.

SDB chairman Govind Dholakia said, “While 250 offices have opened, there are over 4,200 offices in SDB that have to open. Once the SDB becomes operational, diamond merchants and brokers currently working from Mahidharpura and Varachha will open their offices here.”

Meanwhile, GJEPC Gujarat region Chairman Vijay Mangukiya said that he has requested state Education Minister Praful Panseriya to make Bengali an optional language in municipal and grant-in-aid schools of Surat for students till Class 8. There are over 70,000 Bengali artisans working in diamond factories in the city, he added.

“Bengali artisans are experts in making gold ornaments. Some of them stay alone in Surat and some live with their families. If Bengali language is taught in the municipal schools and government schools, all these artisans can bring their families to Surat and stay here permanently without thinking of migrating,” Mangukiya said. He added, “Even if they want to settle down in Surat, they cannot bring their families here, as they fear that the education of their children will get jeopardised. If we teach Bengali language in schools, it would benefit them… The minister had assured he will look into the demand.”

Source : The Indian Express

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