Khattar govt’s industry policy overhaul eyes big investments
In a bid to climb up the first-ever ease of doing business charts proposed by the BJP government at the Centre, the Haryana government is contemplating to cut down on red tape, push for speedy online and time-bound clearances, introduce e-auction of plots and bring a three-tier grievance redressal mechanism to become more business-friendly and draw investments.
These are some of the highlights of the draft “Industrial and Investment Promotion Policy-2015” that is likely to be made public this week for inviting suggestions, comments and objections from all stakeholders.
The draft policy was discussed at length by chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar with his top officials at a meeting lasting two-and-a-half hours on May 22. Finance and industries minister Capt Abhimanyu was also present.
EASE OF DOING BUSINESS
The draft policy proposes to accelerate clearances for investment proposals by setting up a small empowered group housed in the chief minister’s office (CMO) and headed by principal secretary to chief minister for time-bound approvals under the same roof, according to sources.
The empowered group comprising officials of 10 departments, including industries, environment, power, town and country planning departments, would handle projects involving investment (excluding land cost) of `5 crore and above and grant all project-related approvals in two phases within two months as per the provisions of the Industrial Promotion Act, 2005.
The projects involving investment of less than Rs 5 crore are proposed to be handled by district-level committees headed by deputy commissioners.
While the state has already notified 34 services relating the industries department under the Right to Service Act, it plans to deliver 30 services through the e-biz portal.
“The aim is to simplify procedures, make approvals timebound, promote balanced regional development to bring ease of doing business and reposition Haryana as a preferred destination,” said an officer associated with the process.
BALANCED REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT
The government, which is eyeing investments of Rs 1 lakh crore with four lakh new jobs, is keen on balanced growth through geographical dispersal by identifying industrial zones through mapping and simplifying change-of-land-use procedures and industrial licence norms in such declared zones.
Private industrial parks with reduced threshold for industrial licences, higher residential component, deemed electricity distribution licences and self-governance have also been planned with emphasis on walkto-work culture. Also, there is a three-tier grievance redressal mechanism at the district-level agency under the deputy commissioner, state-level agency under the chief secretary and apex-level agency under the chief minister to handle issues and complaints taken up by investors.
Though the new state government had already announced its intention of bringing a new industrial policy, the “ease of doing business” rankings proposed by the Modi government has started a race among the states to simplify procedures to appear more business-friendly. The department of industrial policy and promotion, which has listed 98 points on which the state governments have to act, also plans to “name and shame” states which do not ease their procedures for doing business.