‘Strategic industry’: Union Minister Kumaraswamy on semiconductors day after row erupts over remark on US firm | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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‘Strategic industry’: Union Minister Kumaraswamy on semiconductors day after row erupts over remark on US firm

Jun 15, 2024 02:15 PM IST

Former Karnataka Chief Minister and Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy was appointed the Minister of Heavy Industries and Steel earlier this week.

Union steel and heavy industries minister HD Kumaraswamy, clarifying his remark that questioned the need for investments from international firms in Gujarat, said that semiconductors are a “strategic industry” responsible for generating ample employment. He also lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi's semiconductor-related initiatives.

Union Minister for Steel and Heavy Industries H D Kumaraswamy(PTI)
Union Minister for Steel and Heavy Industries H D Kumaraswamy(PTI)

In a post on X, Kumaraswamy said, “Semiconductor is a strategic industry. It is a basic requirement for electronics and automobile manufacturing. Both these sectors generate lots of employment. I greatly appreciate the semiconductor-related initiatives taken by @PMOIndia and will work towards fulfilling them through my ministry.”

Also Read | HD Kumaraswamy: Man who helmed state twice gets a stint at the Centre

Kumaraswamy on Friday questioned the need for investments by companies like US-based Micron Technology's $2.5 billion semiconductor unit in Gujarat, which would incur a subsidy bill of 3.2 crore for each job it creates.

Explaining his statement on Saturday, speaking to ANI he said, “Bringing semiconductor sector in India is strategic, we require it. Parallelly, we have to create jobs for the second-line sector, our small-scale industry... We are thinking about it and working out on it... I have been misquoted. I have not mentioned any state. Why has my statement been picked up like this? I have to be very cautious in the future.”

Speaking at a live televised show on Friday, as quoted by Times of India, he said, “The new manufacturing unit will generate about 5,000 jobs. For this, we are giving them $2 billion in subsidies. If you calculate, that’s 70% of the company’s total investment. I asked officials how justifiable it is to allocate such a significant amount of funds. Conversely, there are small-scale industries... In Peenya (an industrial estate in Bengaluru), there are small-scale industries. How many lakh jobs have they created? What benefits have we provided to them? I am contemplating these matters, such as how to safeguard the nation’s wealth.”

Also Read | ‘PM Modi has given me an opportunity’: JD(S) leader Kumaraswamy

Former Karnataka Chief Minister and Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy was appointed the Minister of Heavy Industries and Steel earlier this week. After the announcement, Kumaraswamy said: “I am deeply grateful to the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, for appointing me as the Minister of Steel and Heavy Industries in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government, in its third consecutive term.”

The JD(S) leader won the Mandya constituency in Karnataka, defeating Congress' Venkataramane Gowda (also known as Star Chandru). Kumaraswamy secured over 8.51 lakh votes, winning by a margin of more than 2.84 lakh votes. Gowda, his closest competitor, received 5.67 lakh votes.

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