States

Friction in MVA: Congress backs oil refinery at Nanar

Nana Patole  

In yet another instance of disagreement in the tripartite Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra, the Congress has extended its support to construct an oil refinery at Nanar village in Ratnagiri district.

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has already announced that the State government will not proceed with the Nanar oil refinery project owing to strong opposition from locals.

Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole, who was on a tour to inspect the damage caused by Cyclone Tauktae in Ratnagiri district, said that the project would be beneficial for the district and the entire Konkan.

“There are some problems faced by fisherfolk which can be solved. Certain industrialists have taken lands of locals at lesser prices. This needs to be addressed as well. Once this issue is resolved, the Nanar oil refinery project will be made functional,” Mr Patole said.

Earlier, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray had written to the CM requesting that the project not be shifted out of Nanar.

For MVA, this is the second instance in a month’s time when the Congress has openly taken a stand contrary to its allies. It has strongly opposed the State government’s decision to cancel reservation in promotions.

Mr. Patole’s support to the project has irked locals as well as organisations which are uniting citizens against the project.

“We assume that the statement by Mr. Patole is the official position of the Congress. We do not know what triggered the Congress to suddenly come out in support of the project. But we are confident that the word the Chief Minister has given us will not be violated,” said Satyajit Chavan, convener, Konkan Vinashkari Prakalp Virodhi Samiti, an umbrella organisation of the protesting citizens and various groups.

The CM had in March said that an alternative site had been identified for the oil refinery and the project would not come up at Nanar. “I appeal to all of you to no longer call this the Nanar oil refinery project. This is only an oil refinery project now,” Mr. Thackeray had said.

The Ratnagiri Refinery and Petrochemical Limited was proposed to be set up in Ratnagiri district in 2015 as a joint venture between Indian investors like Indian Oil, Bharat Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum, and the Saudi-owned Aramco.


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Printable version | Aug 1, 2021 2:16:54 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/states/friction-in-mva-congress-backs-oil-refinery-at-nanar/article34645373.ece

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