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Industrialisation will not be affected: Minister

Special Correspondent
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‘ArcelorMittal has remained a non-starter as it has not fulfilled any condition agreed to in the MoU’

The State government on Thursday claimed that ArcelorMittal’s decision to back out on its proposed mega steel plant project in Keonjhar district would have no impact on the ongoing industrialisation in the State. Reacting to the development, Steel and Mines Minister Rajani Kant Singh said the project had remained a non-starter as the company had not fulfilled any condition of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The company had signed the MoU with the State government in 2006 to establish a 12 million tonne capacity steel plant in four phases with an investment of Rs.50,000 crore.

State Chief Secretary Jugal Kishore Mohapatra told presspersons that the company’s decision to pull out would not have any impact on other projects as the project had made little progress on the ground. The Chief Secretary further said the State government had not recommended the company’s case to the Centre for grant of mining lease as the project had failed to make the required progress to be eligible for recommendation for grant of mining lease. The company had on Wednesday announced scrapping of the project in Keonjhar district of the State over problems in acquiring land and securing iron ore linkages.

On the other hand, opposition Congress and BJP criticised the Biju Janata Dal government saying that its faulty industrial policy had led to the withdrawal of ArcelorMittal. Stating that scrapping of the project amounted to denial of jobs to many unemployed youths, Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee president Jayadev Jena said the company’s withdrawal from the project exposed Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s lack of sincerity to make Odisha an industrially developed State. Terming the development unfortunate, BJP spokesperson Sajjan Sharma blamed thegovernment for making tall claims about attracting huge investments to fight unemployment and strengthen the economy.

Scrapping of the project will lead to denial of jobs to many unemployed youths. The government is not sincere to make rapid strides industrially

Jayadev Jena

OPCC president

t

The company had signed the MoU with the State government in 2006

It was to establish a 12 million tonne capacity steel plant in four phases with an investment of Rs.50,000 crore

The project has made little progress on the ground, says Chief Secretary Jugal Kishore Mohapatra

The company did not make the required progress to be eligible for recommendation for grant of mining lease, he says

It is a fallout of faulty industrial policy, say Congress

and BJP


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