Updated: June 28, 2022 2:04:43 pm
The biggest investment pledges received by the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government in Rajasthan under the ‘Invest Rajasthan’ outreach programme include commitments by the Gautam Adani-led Adani Group and the Mukesh Ambani-chaired Reliance Industries Ltd, according to information obtained by The Indian Express under the Right to Information (RTI) Act.
Data furnished by the state’s Bureau of Investment Promotion (BoIP) following the RTI application shows the two corporate houses together pledged over Rs 1.68 lakh crore between December 2021 and March 2022 in Letters of Intent (LoIs)/ Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs), with the state government. This accounts for almost 18 per cent of Rs 9,40,453 crore — the total value of investment pledges over Rs 1,000 crore during the period.
The investment pledges have come to the Congress-ruled state despite Rahul Gandhi, former party President, accusing the BJP at the Centre of crony capitalism – he referred to Adani and Ambani as the “double A variant” spreading in the Indian economy and resulting in monopolies across different sectors – in the Lok Sabha in February this year. He had earlier too taken similar jibes on the BJP-led government at the Centre.
According to the data furnished, investment pledges were made between December 2021 and March 2022 by Reliance New Energy Solar Limited (Rs 1,00,000 crore), Adani Green Energy Limited (Rs 60,000 crore), Adani Infra Limited (Rs 5,000 crore), Adani Total Gas Limited (Rs 3,000 crore) and Adani Wilmar Ltd (Rs 246.08 crore).
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Among 4,016 institutions listed by the Rajasthan BoIP are also JSW Future Energy Limited (Rs 40,000 crore), Sterlite Power Technologies Private Limited of the Vedanta Group (Rs 40,000 crore), Hindustan Zinc Cairn, also of Vedanta Group (Rs 33,350 crore), Axis Energy Ventures Private Limited (Rs 30,000 crore), Axis Energy (Rs 30,000 crore), Eden-Renewables (Rs 20,000 crore) and Tata Power (Rs 15,000 crore).
The BoIP website describes the ‘Invest Rajasthan’ programme as the “State’s active investor outreach program comprising domestic, national, and international investor meets, embassy connect programs and virtual seminars. The program aims at soliciting investment proposals, processing them on a mission mode and taking them to fruition.”
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The state had originally planned to hold an ‘Invest Rajasthan Summit’ in January this year, but it was postponed due to the Covid-19 situation. In the run-up to the proposed summit, Chief Minister Gehlot had even met several industrialists including Gautam Adani. The summit is now scheduled on October 7-8 in Jaipur.
In February this year, in the debate over the motion of thanks to the President’s address Rahul Gandhi had spoken about what he called the decimation of the small and medium industry to the concentration of capital in the hands of “AA” (a reference to Ambani and Adani). A couple of months ago in December 2021, addressing a rally in Jaipur to protest against price rise, he had said, “Aa gaye acche din. Kiske? Hum do, hamare do, unke. Airport dekho, port dekho, coal mine dekho, telephone dekho, supermarket dekho, jahan bhi dekho bhaiya do log dikhenge aapko, Adani ji, Ambani ji. Unki galti nahin hai. Dekho bhaiya aapko agar koi muft mein kuch de, aap kya wapas de doge? Nahin doge. Unki galti thodi hai. Galti Pradhan Mantri ki hai (Good times have arrived. For whom? It is for ‘we two, our two’. Be it airport, port, coal mine, telephone, supermarket, wherever you see, you will see two people, Adani Ji and Ambani Ji. It is not their fault. If you get something for free, will you deny it? No, you will not. It is not their fault; it is the mistake of the Prime Minister).”
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