Kolkata: Sulekha, one of the oldest companies in Bengal and a household name for ink and pen has become the state’s first firm to run its factory exclusively with solar energy. Kaushik Maitra, managing director of Sulekha said two 25 KW solar plants have been installed at the factory and behind the shop at Sulekha More off Jadavpur to run the factory exclusively with solar power. It may be mentioned that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has time and again urged businessmen to install solar power in their factories.
Set up in 1934, the Sulekha factory building is situated on 22,000 square feet area. The name — Sulekha — was given by Rabindranth Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi. Inspired by the Civil Disobedience of Gandhi, a Physics student of Presidency College Nanigopal Maitra came forward to manufacture ink. The student was arrested and jailed as he refused to write with ink that was imported from England. He appeared in the MSc examination from prison and wrote the answer scripts with pencil manufactured in India.
After completing his MSc, Maitra joined Presidency College as lecturer and started manufacturing ink and sold it under the name “Professor Maitra’s kali (ink). Soon, Sulekha became a household name in Bengal. From early 1980s, Sulekha was closed due to militant trade unionism. It has again come back and hit the market with ink, ball point and fountain pens and home care chemicals.