Posco not to pull out of Orissa: Govt

Posco not to pull out of Orissa: Govt

Bhubaneswar: Orissa government on Wednesday said Posco-India was unlikely to pull out of the state in the wake of halting of work on the proposed Rs51,000 crore steel project following allegations of violation of green norms.

“There is no such proposal from the company. They (Posco) might have a separate proposal in Karnataka. That does not mean the company is pulling out of Orissa," steel and mines minister, Raghunath Mohanty told the news agency.

A Posco-India spokesman said that the steel major had already signed an MoU with Karnataka government for setting up a 6 mtpa steel plant in that state. The Karnataka project had nothing to do with the port-based project near Paradip in Orissa.

Claiming that the state government had completed its work for implementation of the 12 mtpa steel project, Mohanty said about 1,000 acres of the 4,000 acres land had already acquired when the Centre dashed a “cease work" notice based on the N. C. Saxena Committee report.

The state government was hopeful and certain that the South Korean steel major would set up the greenfeild steel mill after getting clearance from the union environment and forest ministry, the minister said.

As its bid to provide raw material linakge to Posco-India was questioned by Orissa High Court, the state government had already filed a special leave petition (SLP) in the Supreme Court to enable the company to avail iron ore from Khandadhar reserve in Sundargarh district, Mohanty said.

“Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, South Korean President Lee Mung-Bak and Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik have agreed to implement the project. Therefore, there is no question of Posco pulling out of the state," Mohanty claimed.