No matter how much we criticize Uddahv Thackrey and Maha Vikas Aghadi, but they have really made efforts to bring business and industries to Maharashtra. Vedanta and Foxconn’s was one of the joint projects in Maharashtra which went to Gujarat due to the laxity of the present government”, which resulted in the loss of employment to 1 lakh youth. Rattled by the political fallout of the Vedanta Group-Foxconn Rs 2.06 lakh-crore mega project choosing Gujarat is deliberate failure of Eknath Shinde who is blaming former CM Uddhav Thackeray’s government for the loss. At the same time the Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi allies slammed Shinde for “treachery, and bulldozing the state economy
A day after Vedanta-Foxconn signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Gujarat government to set up the project, which was once proposed in Maharashtra, a political blame game began with the Opposition accusing the Eknath Shinde-Devendra Fadnavis government of failing to safeguard the economic interests of the state. This project has gone to Gujarat because BJP leaders in Maharashtra are more interested in pleasing their bosses in Delhi. They want the blessings of their leaders from Gujarat to continue. Many such projects were announced in the favour of Gujarat since 2014.
Central and Maharashtra governments, in which BJP is a major partner, over inflation and unemployment should understand how they are damaging the state bit by bit. Clearly taken aback by the political-economic bombshell with long-term consequences, Shinde spoke with Prime Minister Narendra Modi where the latter reportedly assured him of “giving even bigger projects to Maharashtra” in the future. But how could Shinde be agreed to the larger project for the future when in the present scenario the state is at a loss? All parties in state have demanded a thorough probe into the sequence of events leading to Vedanta-Foxconn opting for Gujarat when more than 90 percent of its deal was finalized with Maharashtra, including allotment of 1,100 acres of land near Pune.
Holding MVA responsible for letting the project relocate to Gujarat, Shelar said, “Then Industries minister Subash Desai (MVA) government owes an explanation as to what they did to retain the project.” Shelar said Shinde and his deputy Devendra Fadnavis had gone all out in pursuing the project since July 2022. He said, “On July 26, a delegation under the managing director of Vedanta Global, Arya Hebbar, met the CM and Deputy CM and gave a presentation on the project”…”the delegation said they were keen to invest in Talegaon, Pune due to the availability of skilled manpower, industry-friendly environment, connectivity to Mumbai and JNPT ports, strong value chain, and modern infrastructure.”
As the political blame game escalated in Maharashtra over Vedanta-Foxconn picking Gujarat for their semiconductor plant the state lost the $20 billion project. To solace himself and misguide people CM Eknath Shinde announced they had a meeting with Vedanta-Foxconn and offered subsidies and incentives and blamed the MVA government for the JV picking Gujarat for their USD 20 billion project.
New industries must come to Maharashtra and Centre must support the state but Modi ji’s prime interest is Gujarat. BJP’s state government is not making any efforts. The mega semiconductor project of Vedanta-Foxconn going to Gujarat was an attack on Maharashtra’s ‘prestige’. When BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis was chief minister from 2014-19, the GIFT City project was handed over to Gujarat, and current CM Eknath Shinde similarly allowed the semiconductor plant to slip away. Maharashtra had also lost a proposed bulk drug park project in Raigad district as the Centre approved similar parks in Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh instead.
Fadnavis’ post on Twitter came after Vedanta’s Anil Agrawal in a series of tweets, said they “have to start in one place & based on professional & independent advice we chose Gujarat”. This multi-billion dollar long term investment will change the course of Indian electronics. We will create a pan Indian ecosystem and are fully committed to investing in Maharashtra as well. Maharashtra will be our key to forward integration in our Gujarat.
In 2015-16, Fadnavis had taken initiative to get Asia’s first green refinery project to Maharashtra. The project promised investment of Rs 3 lakh crore and employment to one lakh people. It was to be a joint venture between Indian Oil Corporation Ltd, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd and Saudi Arabia’s Aramco. However, the Shiv Sena, which was then an alliance partner of the BJP in the coalition government between 2014 to 2019, opposed the project in the coastal Konkan region. As a result, the process of land acquisition for the world’s largest single-complex refinery project was stopped and the project was scuttled.