Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath spoke to yoga guru Ramdev over the phone on Tuesday night after the latter’s Patanjali Ayurved cited non-cooperation from the government and said it was pulling out of its proposed Rs 6,000-crore mega food processing project along the Yamuna Expressway.
Sources said the Chief Minister ensured Ramdev that the project was on the cards and “minor issues” would be cleared soon. The yoga guru, sources added, was convinced by Yogi Adityanath’s assurances.
The Hairdwar-based Patanjali Ayurved had proposed to invest up to Rs 6,000 crore to set up a plant in 425 acres of land to cater to the domestic and export markets through its step-down firm Patanjali Food & Herbal Park. The Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA) could not get the required clearances for transfer of land from the state government, said a top company official.
He told news agency ANI that they had had several meetings with state government officials, ministers and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath too to sort it out. But it didn’t help due to the lacklustre approach of the state government, he said.
Balkrishna said the company had already ordered the machinery for the food processing unit that would have improved the lives of lakhs of farmers of Uttar Pradesh besides creating huge employment opportunities for people.
According to the centre’s food processing ministry, the food and herbal park in Gautam Budh Nagar near Delhi had been given in-principle approval in January, 2018. But the company had to meet four to five conditions including submission land and bank loan papers.
“We have given a one-month extension to Patanjali… they have to meet the condition. In case, Patanjali does not meet the condition, we have no choice but to cancel. We have done it earlier in many projects,” J P Meena, who heads the centre’s food processing department told news agency PTI. Meena said the company had time till end of this month.
Acharya Balkrishna’s public threat of scrapping plans for Uttar Pradesh comes as an embarrassment for the BJP that is in power at the centre and the state.
“Mega Food Park was coming up to make lives of farmers better. We had also asked for permission from central government. There are paper works for which we requested state government. But due to their disappointing attitude, it couldn’t be done,” he added.
Yesterday, Balkrishna took to his Twitter handle and informed that they have to shift the food park due to state government’s disappointing attitude. According to reports, around 455 acres of land was allocated for the Patanjali Food and Herbal Park in Greater Noida. In 2016, former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav had laid the foundation of this park.