New Delhi, October 29: The shifting of mega investment projects from Maharashtra to Gujarat can possibly be seen as a plus for the BJP’s campaign for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state where elections are scheduled, but appears to spell trouble for the saffron party’s alliance government in the adjoining state headed by the Eknath Shinde faction of the Shiv Sena.
In the last three months alone, Maharashtra has lost four major projects with a total investment of Rs. 1.80 lakh crore – some of these to Gujarat.
The latest on the list is the Tata- Airbus C-295 transport aircraft manufacturing facility that was planned to be set up at Mihan in Nagpur with an investment of Rs. 22,000 crores. The project will now come up in Vadodara.
These developments have revived the traditional Maharashtra-Gujarat rivalries – to the embarrassment and discomfiture of the Eknath Shinde government. Former Maharashtra minister Aditya Thackeray has accused the Shinde government of “not being serious about the state’s progress and failing to protect the interests of Maharashtra”.
Leader of the Opposition in the state legislative Council, Ambadas Danve – a loyalist of former chief minister Uddhav Thackeray – claimed that projects were being shifted to Gujarat as part of the efforts of Shinde and the BJP to bolster the saffron party’s electoral prospects in the state.
Earlier, the big ticket project involving an investment of Rs. 1.54 lakh crore for the setting up of a semiconductor fab unit by the Vedanta-Foxconn had been moved from Maharashtra to Gujarat.
The Maharashtra government had finalised the location for setting up the plant at the Talegaon Industrial Area. But the company abruptly announced that the facility would be located at Dholera in Gujarat. A bulk drug park was also planned for Maharashtra. However, the Union Government accorded “in principle” approval last month to the proposals of Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh under the scheme.
In the last week of September, the central government had also turned down Maharashtra’s proposal to set up a Rs. 424 crore medical devices park in Aurangabad’s Auric City. Instead, the central government approved similar proposals of Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Himachal.
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