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In competitive investment climate, Himachal plans roadshows at Bengaluru, Hyderabad

In competitive investment climate, Himachal plans roadshows at Bengaluru, Hyderabad

Shimla: In competitive investment climate, Himachal Pradesh --- a state once seen an Asia's emerging pharmaceutical hub, till 2010, once again wants to hard-sell its investment potential through two mega roadshows planned for Bengaluru and Hyderabad on January 30 and 31 respectively.

The roadshows plan, which comes close to the heels of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur's one-year in power and Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pat, is primarily seen an opportunity to position the small hill state at country's level, and also globally.

The state government has already taken a decision to host a Global investment meet on June 11 and 12 at Dharamshala on the lines of Uttarakhand investment Summit held in October 2018. Uttarakhand had rolled out investment proposals worth Rs 70,000 crore in presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

"We also planned Global Investment meeting in November 2018 but due to the shortage of time, it was postponed to June 11 and 12 to get in touch with investors, within the country and outside," admitted Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, who has a target to offer investment proposals for Rs. 85,000 crore.

In the upcoming roads shows, the government will introduce Himachal Pradesh as an idle destination for new investments in the Tourism, hospitality, resorts, pharmaceutical, MSME, engineering tools, information technology, health and wellness centers, herbal and Ayurved based projects, horticulture, power, food processing, real estate, and education.

"The idea is to introduce the state and establish contacts with the top business and industrial houses at two big cities.This will further help us in upcoming Global investment meet for which massive preparations were underway," Additional Chief Secretary (Industry) Manoj Kumar revealed to the Millennium Post on Thursday.

But, the idea of road shows in Himachal Pradesh is not new. During the Congress regime, former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh also went wooing investments at major potential cities like Bengaluru, Chennai, Mumbai, and Ahmedabad.

Mukesh Agnihotri, leader of the opposition, termed the proposed road shows of Jai Ram Thakur as 'belated' move to cover his failure to attract new investments, during past one year.

"Uttarakhand has already taken a lead and Prime Minister Modi himself drove his investor friends there, putting Himachal Pradesh to great disadvantage. Had Thakur used his good relations with Prime Minister and planned global investors meet before Uttarakhand, we would have definitely turned the tables on other states, now our (HP's) competitors," says Agnihotri, who was industries minister in the earlier Congress government.

He also wonders why did Prime Minister did not agree to State's demand (made by Jai Ram Thakur) to sanction industrial package to Himachal Pradesh and Uttrakhand, both BJP ruled states, on the lines of North-East and Jammu and Kashmir.

He claims the industrial units, which set-up their manufacturing units in the state after 2003 central industrial package---offering three-tier benefits to new industry, were winding-up their shops in Himachal Pradesh. It's high time to stop the migration of the industry than hoping to attract new industrial projects, Agnihotri suggests.

Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, however, rejects Agnihotri's 'wishful' thinking on new investments.

"We have best investment climate. Industrialists are facilitated well in setting-up units. The state has a faster and single window clearance process. Best law and order situation and so many inherent advantages.

The land clearance was being made simpler and time-bound," he explains.

Ashwani Sharma

Ashwani Sharma

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