Congress Protests Disinvestment In Neelachal Ispat In Odisha

Bhubaneswar: Protesting the disinvestment in Neelachal Ispat Nigam Limited (NINL) in Jajpur district, the Congress has urged the Odisha government to run the 1.1-million-tonne integrated iron and steel plant as a guarantor.

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Speaking to the media on Thursday, Senior Congress leader Panchanan Kanungo said the NINL, which is managed by Metals and Minerals Trading Corporation (MMTC), has substantially increased its annual production. But the production in the plant came down as the Centre wanted more commission. Now, to get more commission, the Centre, in collusion with the state government has given in-principle approval for strategic disinvestment in NINL, he alleged.

Condemning the move, Kanungo said that if the Centre and the state government are keen on safeguarding the interest of Odisha, they should hand over NINL management to the Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL).

He further requested the state government to run the plant as a guarantor by allowing the state-owned Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) and the Industrial Promotion and Investment Corporation of Odisha Limited (IPICOL) to buy out the share of the steel PSU.

NINL is a joint venture of the Centre and Odisha government through their public sector enterprises.

The company has an equity shareholding of central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) Minerals & Metals Trading Corporation Limited (MMTC) (49.78 per cent), National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) (10.10 per cent), MECON (0.68 per cent) and Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) (0.68 per cent) and Odisha government PSEs, Industrial Promotion and Investment Corporation of Odisha Limited (IPICOL) (12 per cent) and Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) (20.47 per cent).

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