Disappointed over delays in the launch of its Rs 50,000-crore steel project in Jharkhand, global steel giant ArcelorMittal is set to relocate its plant proposed in Khunti-Gumla to Bokaro district in the state mainly on account of land acquisition problems.
The world’s largest steelmaker had entered into a pact with the Jharkhand government for setting up a 12 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) steel plant in 2005 but has been facing delays in land acquisition amid regulatory hurdles.
“ArcelorMittal has informed us that they want to shift to Petarwar (Bokaro) and need about 2,000 acres of land for the first phase of their project. They said the response from Petarwar was positive,” Jharkhand Mines and Industries Secretary N.N. Sinha said.
Protests by villagers at the proposed Khunti-Gumla site had forced the company to scout for other places, while negotiations with Petarwar villagers are still going on to acquire land.
The entire project requires around 8,000 acres of land.
ArcelorMittal spokesperson could not be immediately contacted for comments.
NRI billionaire L.N. Mittal, who heads the steel giant, had last month said the company is “anxious” to start work on its proposed greenfield projects in India, which entail an
estimated investment of Rs 1.30 lakh crore.
The company has planned to set up three steel projects in the country — two in Jharkhand and one Orissa with an annual production capacity of 12 million tonnes each.