Modi-land lures state steel makers

Too taxed firms ready to shift base.

Written by Press Trust Of India | Patiala | Published:September 11, 2012 1:06 am

Too taxed firms ready to shift base

Unhappy over high power rates,lack of tax benefits and introduction of e-TRIP system,secondary steel makers on Monday threatened to shift their base to other states if the Punjab government did not pay attention to their problems.

“Over 200 furnaces and 300 steel rolling mills in the state may shift base to Gujarat or in Raipur,Chhattisgarh,if the state government doesn’t wake up and pay attention to our genuine demands,” President of Mandi Gobindgarh Furnace Association Mohinder Gupta said here today.

Gupta accused state’s anti-industry policies for forcing them to move out.

He said the power rates are quite high in Punjab as compared to rates prevailing in other states and it has dented the industry’s margin hard and led their products uncompetitive in the market.

“The state has no policy for industry and the power supply here is minimal. Moreover to our disadvantage,we are quite a distance away from the ports (which makes product costlier here),” he added.

Gupta also complained of lack of benefits in taxation policy and alleged ‘Inspector Raj’,forcing them to think about shifting.

Gupta said Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi had already extended an invitation to them to set up their industries in that state and also assured of every kind of help in setting up the units.

“The Gujarat chief minister extended the invitation when a group of industrialists of Ludhiana and Mandi Gobindgarh met him at Ahmedabad recently,” he said.

He further said they had also seen land in Raipur (Chhatisgarh) and Gujarat,too,and it was available at only Rs 12 lakh per acre in both the states.

“Unlike here,Gujarat has single window clearance for setting up the industry,no need to visit pollution control office or wasting time and money at power offices for getting power connection,” he said.

Industry representatives were also upset over the introduction of e-TRIP to plug the revenue leakage.

“Government needs to protect our interests. The industry here is already facing hardships and by introducing e-TRIP,which entails a cumbersome filing process,state government is putting additional burden on it,” Gupta said.

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