A day after HT spotlight Mexican company Metalsa’s decision to shift out its strategic unit from Seraikala to Beijing after being hurdled by red tape, bribe demands and local thugs, the state government initiated criminal process by lodging FIRs against two locals accused of inciting trouble at the plant.
The government has ordered the local deputy commissioner and the police superintendent to sort out the firm’s law-and-order concerns. The firm had accused the administration of brushing aside its concerns on multiple occasions.
Metalsa, a global structural component solution providing company, first came to Asia by setting up its operations in India’s Seraikela-Kharswan district around five and half years ago. The decision to shift out the company’s proposed strategic unit to China was a blow to the government that was basking in World Bank’s ease of doing business index in which the state was ranked third.
Sources said the Centre has expressed its disenchantment over the improper handling of Metalsa’s concerns by the state authorities and advised prompt punitive actions. Security was tightened and a squad of one officer and five constables was deputed to the plant. “The government is committed to helping the plant function smoothly,” said DGP DK Pandey.
On Wednesday, after the news came in HT, chief secretary Rajiv Gauba asked the administrative officials to rush to the plant and address the company’s issues. On Thursday, Gauba is likely to interact with Metalsa authorities to take stock of the situation.
Metalsa authorities said they were grateful to the state government for its prompt response.
“We highly appreciate the government’s actions today and wish to assure that if conditions improved, Metalsa would make heavy investments in and around the existing plant and thereby create more job opportunities for locals,” said a senior official of the company. A senior government officer not authorized to speak to media said Metalsa’s HR team should be commended for raising the social evils boldly and sensitising the government which is working hard to bring investments into the state.