Special Correspondent

Nirani, top officials are already in Dharwad

State ready to provide 1,000 acres of land in Dharwad

Minister promises to extend all facilities

BANGALORE: With Tata Motors deciding to shift its small car project out of Singur in West Bengal, Karnataka is eager to clinch it.

Top officials of Industry and Finance Departments, led by Industries Minister Murugesh Rudrappa Nirani will meet the top brass of Tata Motors in Dharwad on Sunday.

Mr. Nirani told The Hindu from Dharwad that Tata Motors team will be led by the Managing Director of the company Ravi Kant and Executive Director P.M. Telang. The State Government team, including Chief Secretary Sudharkar Rao, Industries Commissioner Rajkumar Kathri, and Principal Secretary, Department of Finance, M.R. Srinivasa Murthy are in Dharwad.

The Tata Motors has 900 acres of land in Dharwad district.

Of this, 300 acres of land had been used for its joint venture with Hitachi of Japan to produce construction and earth moving machinery.

Tata’s presence

The remaining part of the land was used for the joint venture with the Brazilian commercial vehicle manufacturer Marco Polo for producing passenger buses.

This unit would be ready by January and when completed the plant would have an annual production capacity of 30,000 buses.

A smaller bus unit that was already in production at Lucknow would be merged with the plant in Dharwad, according to the officials of the Tata Motors.

Mr. Nirani said the Government was hopeful of the Tatas bringing the Nano car project to Karnataka.

Mr. Nirani said: “It will be a big boost as Karnataka had all the required inputs for the Nano car project, including skilled labour, power, land and conditions to absorb large-scale investment in the industrial sector.”