Telangana CM takes U-turn, says no takeover of Nizam's Sugar Factory

Mr Rao had earlier promised government takeover of the factory, saying it was having a “historic significance†for Telangana.

Hyderabad: Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Wednesday took a U-turn on the promised take-over of Nizam’s Sugar Factory — that was privatised in 2000 by the then Telugu Desam government and closed last year citing losses.

Mr Rao had earlier promised government takeover of the factory, saying it was having a “historic significance” for TS. He had said that instead of its present status as a private partner in a joint venture, it should be made to run on its own for the benefit of sugarcane farmers.

But, the Chief Minister on Wednesday made it clear in the Assembly that the government would not take over the factory. “NSF is a closed chapter now. We will not take it over,” he said.

Ready to pay to a JV, says KCR
“Farmers are not willing to run the factory by forming a cooperative society along the lines of the cooperative societies in Maharashtra. The government too cannot run the factory as it is not financially viable,” Mr Rao said.

When Opposition leader K. Jana Reddy pointed out to the CM that some farmers were ready to run it, the CM said, “If that’s true, I am ready to hand over the factory to them. I am ready to pay Rs 200 crore or whatever amount to a joint venture private partner to acquire their stakes. I am also ready to offer the chairman post of the cooperative society to you or your MLA T. Jeevan Reddy if you can run the factory. Run it, but it should not become a burden on the government. It should be run by farmers themselves. I shall also allot money for overhauling the factory machinery, so that it can begin operations immediately.”

He stated that he had promised to take over the company in the hope that farmers would run it on their own. “I had sent 400 farmers to Maharashtra to examine how cooperative societies are running sugar factories there. After returning here, they told me that they cannot run the factory that way, and then I have decided to shelve the project,” Mr Rao explained.

While admitting that he had promised to take over the factory during the Telangana statehood agitation and also after TRS came to power, he said, “The situation has changed during the last 15 years. Several sugarcane farmers have opted for other crops. There is not enough sugarcane production here. Otherwise we can make NSF financially viable even now.”

Congress MLAs staged a walkout, protesting the failure of the government in implementing the crop loan waiver scheme completely even after crossing half its term in office.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
Next Story