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Brisk beer sale inspires Bilimoria to set up brewery in Bihar

People have started drinking a lot of beer in Nitish Kumar's Bihar. Srinand Jha reports.

delhi Updated: Jan 06, 2012 23:55 IST
Srinand Jha
Srinand Jha
Hindustan Times

People have started drinking a lot of beer in Nitish Kumar's Bihar.

In the last five years, the beer market in Bihar has grown approximately 10 times-from an annual 700,000 cases sold five years ago to 7 million cases now.

This is one factor that inspired Lord Karan Bilimoria to go against conventional wisdom to set up the first brewery of the Molson-Coors-Cobra brand of beer in the outskirts of Patna.

Bilimoria, who is visiting India as a participant of the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas beginning at Jaipur on Saturday, has acquired a new title: of bringing the first major multinational to the badlands of Bihar.

"It is all about the governance and leadership of Nitish Kumar. Crime figures have reduced six times in the last six years. GDP growth of Bihar is higher than India's aggregate. It's the only state to have passed the Right to Public Services Act," Bilimoria told HT.

Bilimoria-a member of the British House of Lords and President of the Indo-UK business council-is upbeat about his Bihar venture. "We are having the first board meeting of the Molson-Coors-Cobra joint venture next week in Patna," he said.

Along with personalities including Lord Meghnad Desai, Bilimoria will also be attending the Bihar government's version of the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas in Patna from February 17-19.

A member of the Global Advisory Council, Bilimoria is hopeful of making headway at Saturday's third meeting of the council on the long-pending demand of voting rights to Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) who have a dual citizenship.

First Published: Jan 06, 2012 23:53 IST