Mysore sugar factory must remain with state: Siddaramaiah
Congress Legislative Party leader and former chief minister Siddaramaiah on Sunday participated in a protest held at the Farmers’ Protection Committee in Mandya, demanding that Karnataka retain ownership of the historical Mysore Sugar Company Limited Factory.
“The Mysore sugar factory is the only government-owned sugar mill in the state which has a total of 65 sugar factories. Therefore, I demand that the factory be kept in the state’s possession without being privatized,” said Siddaramaiah participating in the Dharani Satyagraha.
Founded by Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar in the pre-independence era, the Mysugar Sugar Factory which been in profit for many years and has subsequently suffered losses. Siddaramaiah said that the government and not the farmers is responsible for the loss and the onus lies on the government to revive it.
“So many state-owned factories and companies are now at a loss. The government must find out what causes the loss and revive them,” the former chief minister said.
JD(S) MLA Annadani had in the state Parliament session asked the government about the Mysugar sugar factory. “I then intervened and urged the Speaker to allow at least half an hour of discussion as this was an important issue. At my insistence, the Chairperson allowed the debate in the session. I also brought to the notice of the government several factors and urged the factory to be retained by the government,” Sidaramaiah said.
“At first, the government-appointed managing director had no interest in the factory. How about the factory getting back on track? When I was the chief minister, the factory had 145 crore funds to save factory.
“The factory-owned property is located in many places, including Bangalore and Mysore. On the opposite side of Ravindra Kalakshetra, there is land belonging to the factory. The land can be developed and the proceeds from it can be used for the factory,” the JD(U) leader said.
Slamming chief minister Yediyurappa, Siddaramaiah asked that if private sugar factories in Mysore and Mandya could make profits why could not a government factory make a profit?
“Doesn’t this have to be a commitment to the government? Yediyurappa is from Mandya district, I thought he would develop this factory. But in his time he began work on privatization,” Siddaramaiah said.
“The Mandya people have an emotional connection with the Mysugar sugar factory. The farmer welfare forum is rallying and protesting in Mysore, and I have demanded that the government not privatize the factory for any reason,” he said.
To our protest and demand, the government abandoned its decision to privatize the factory. Now the farmers are protesting to revive the factory and reopen it.
“I am talking to Chief Minister Basavaraja Bommayi to provide the necessary grants for the revival of the factory. If they do not do this, we will start the factory again within a month of taking office once we come to power.
I have my full support for the Farmers Welfare Forum. I hope that all of you struggle, starting the factory as soon as possible” said Siddaramaiah.