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Raigad SEZ voting: Govt wants more details

20th November, 2008

Business Standard

Raigad SEZ voting: Govt wants more details
Business Standard
Makarand Gadgil / Mumbai November 20, 2008, 0:46 IST
The much-awaited report by the Raigad district collector on referendum over the inclusion of 22 villages of Pen tehsil in the Mumbai special economic zone (SEZ) has been delayed further as the state government has sought a more detailed analysis. The SEZ is promoted by Anand Jain, a close associate of Reliance Industries Ltd Chairman Mukesh Ambani.
The referendum, held on September 21, was ordered as these villages fall in the command area of the Hetavane dam. According to the Centre’s SEZ policy, irrigated land cannot be acquired for SEZs.
It is reliably learnt that the district administration had almost finalised the report last week. However, fresh orders were issued from the mantralaya (the state government headquarters) asking for a more detailed analysis of the information gathered.
Raigad District Collector Nipun Vinayak said, “Since this is a sensitive issue, the government has asked for a more detailed analysis using all parameters. The district administration has got back to the task of collating information and preparing a more analytical report”.
He did not elaborate on the fresh directive by the government and said it would take another week or two to finalise the report. He said no fresh report had been sought.
The activists protesting against the SEZ had earlier claimed that more than 90 per cent of the farmers had said no the project.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh’s office today claimed that 131 SEZs coming up over 44,000 hectares were going to create 6.9 million jobs in the state.
Out of these, 100 have received formal approval, which means they have land in their possession. The approved SEZs include 38 notified ones.
The coastal Konkan region will have 64 SEZs out of which 17 are in Raigad district alone. Western Maharashtra will have 44 SEZs.
Backward regions like Marathwada and Vidarbha will have 14 and 9 SEZs, respectively.
State government’s industrial infrastructure arm, MIDC, has partnered with seven developers whose SEZs will come up over 10,000 hectares.

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