Nitish inaugurates Bihar’s first grain- based ethanol plant at Purnia

The region has emerged as a hub for cultivation of maize, which can be used to make ethanol at the plant, set up by Eastern India Biofuels Private Limited at a cost of 105 crore
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar after inaugurating grain-based ethanol plant in Purnia on Saturday. (Santosh Kumar)
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar after inaugurating grain-based ethanol plant in Purnia on Saturday. (Santosh Kumar)
Published on Apr 30, 2022 09:20 PM IST
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ByAditya Nath Jha, Purnia

Bihar chief minister (CM) Nitish Kumar on Saturday unveiled state’s first grain-based ethanol plant in Purnia and said it will benefit farmers, especially maize and paddy growers of Purnia and Kosi divisions comprising seven districts.

Kumar, who was accompanied by state’s industries minister Syed Shahnawaz Hussain, said the production of ethanol would help contain prices of diesel and petrol. He said about 20 per cent ethanol could be blended into fuel, resulting in reduction of fuel prices in India.

The plant, situated at Ganeshpur Parora, about 12 km from Purnia town, is spread over 15 acres of land.

The region has emerged as a hub for cultivation of maize, which can be used to make ethanol at the plant, set up by Eastern India Biofuels Private Limited at a cost of 105 crore.

“The by-product of the ethanol will be used as fodder for animals,” Hussain said, adding it will benefit maize and paddy growers the most.”

Purnia, Katihar, Araria and Kishanganj districts, known as Seemanchal region, account for 80% of the total maize produced in Bihar and together produce 30-35 lakh metric tonnes (MTs) from April to August.

“Ethanol can be manufactured from even substandard maize and broken rice and hence farmers who have been facing difficulties in selling such maize and broken rice will benefit,” the industries minister said.

Bihar came up with an ethanol production promotion policy in the first half of 2021.

In Bihar, 17 ethanol production plants are being set up, which is likely to produce 35 crore litres of the fuel every year by using sugarcane, molasses, maize and broken rice. The ethanol manufactured will be supplied to oil marketing companies for blending into petrol and diesel.

Ethanol plants are being set up in Muzaffarpur, Bhojpur, Nalanda, Buxar, Madhubani, Begusarai, Gopalganj, East Champaran, Bhagalpur, besides Purnia.

Bihar’s minister for consumer protection Lesi Singh, who was also present on the occasion, thanks chief minister and industries minister for setting up the first ethanol plant of Bihar in Purnia.

Singh represents Dhamdaha constituency in Purnia in the state assembly.

Purnia district magistrate Rahul Kumar said, “We took it (setting up of the plant) as a challenge and acted with coordination and cooperation within the departments and we are happy we emerged successful.”

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