Efforts on to revive MPM: Sindhia

BANGALORE, MARCH 24. The Government is making a serious attempt to revive Mysore Paper Mills (MPM), the Minister for Industries and Infrastructure Development, P.G.R. Sindhia, told the Legislative Assembly today.

Replying to K.N. Rajanna, he said a Cabinet subcommittee is looking at ways of improving the viability of the MPM. A decision will be taken in about four months as it involves an expenditure of Rs. 465 crores. This includes the installation of modern machinery.

Mr. Sindhia said the Government is also thinking of selling its shares or even diversifying the mills. A sugar unit and a cogeneration plant are also being planned to generate revenue.

The problems facing the MPM include high cost of production, low productivity, lack of upgraded technology and the availability of imported newsprint at a lower price.

There are 16 private paper mills in the State, including the West Coast Paper Mills at Dandeli, he said.

To another question on the sugar industry, Mr. Sindhia and the Minister for Sugar, Amaregouda Bayyapur, said the Government, with great difficulty, has located the owner of Mahadeshwara Sugar Factory at Kollegal.

The factory, which was owned by the Khodays, was sold some time ago, but the Government had no document to identify the owner. The Govern- ment, however, has taken care of the interests of growers and employees of the factory.

Mr. Bayyapur said the Government has requested the Centre to release the Rs. 47-crore export subsidy due to the sugar factories.

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