Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh met Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group head Anil Ambani, Mahindra Group chief Anand Mahindra, RPG Group chairman Harsh Goenka and other industrial leaders in Mumbai on Tuesday. Capt is on a three-day visit to Mumbai to invite investors to the state.
In a breakfast meeting with Amarinder, Ambani pointed to “huge losses” incurred by Punjab due to purchase of power at high cost. He reportedly offered power to the state at Rs 1.75 per unit. The CM said he will review all power purchase agreements (PPAs) to assess the cost differential.
In response to a suggestion by Ambani for introducing the metro rail service in Punjab as public-private partnership, the CM invited his firm to study the urban transport system in Ludhiana to explore the possibility of setting up an elevated metro.
Ambani also sought land for setting up testing ranges for his firm’s new defence projects, while Goenka showed interest in setting up a tractor tyre plant in Punjab. The chief minister (CM) invited the industrialists to explore viability of their projects, assuring them of the government’s support in providing land and other facilities. He reportedly offered land to Ambani in Bathinda and Rajpura.
Mahindra for digitising urban local bodies
Amarinder also welcomed Anand Mahindra’s offer for digitisation of the state’s urban local bodies. Tech Mahindra is also keen to set up Dial 100 emergency response system.
Responding to Mahindra’s request for land and incentive package for Swaraj tractors, finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal said about 100 acres of land was available in Bathinda, the strategic gateway to Rajasthan and Haryana. Badal also sought Mahindra’s support for the ‘hara tractor scheme’, which was part of the Congress poll manifesto.
While Mahindra stressed the need for a certification body to ensure quality of potatoes in Punjab (the company is supplying potatoes to McCain), Hindustan Unilever Ltd CEO and MD Sanjiv Mehta expressed his company’s interest in procuring tomatoes and citrus fruits on a large scale from the state for its Kisan jams and squashes. The meeting with Mehta centred on collaboration with the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) to enhance production of tomatoes.
Free wifi in schools, colleges
Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) head Mukesh Ambani has promised free wifi to government educational and health institutions in Punjab. He also promised employment for the youth and training of sportspersons for the forthcoming Tokyo Olympics during a meeting with Badal and irrigation and power minister Rana Gurjit Singh.