The government is hoping to get a third food park despite similar projects languishing in the state because of apathy.
Since the Mega Food Park, which was supposed to come up at Kahalgaon in Bhagalpur, is facing a bleak future, the state is pinning its hopes on Varanasi-based JVL Group for a similar park. The Calcutta-based Keventer Agro is supposed to build the Mega Food Park.
“The Centre (ministry of agriculture and food processing) has approved two food parks for each state. Since the Mega Food Park is not taking off in Bhagalpur, the state government has offered them land for the project in Banka. The company officials have seen the land. Now, since the Banka land offer is being finalised, the Centre should allow three food parks in the states,” an officer with the industries department told The Telegraph on Monday.
He added that if that was the case, then Varanasi-based JVL Group, whose proposal to set up a food park in Bihar is on the Centre’s waiting list, could set up shop in the state. “JVL, which has a rice and an edible oil mill in Bihar, has proposed to set up a food park in Dalmia Nagar (Dehri-on-Sone) in Rohtas. Since the Centre has approved just two food parks in each state, the project is in the waiting. The Centre should consider increasing food parks in the states,” the officer said.
However, the irony is none of the two food parks — Keventer’s and Delhi-based Pristine Logistics and Infraprojects Private Limited — approved for Bihar by the Centre has taken shape yet. Though Pristine officials claimed that work on their project is on. While the Centre gave the final nod for Keventer’s food park in November 2011, the approval for Pristine Logistics was given in September 2012. In a talk with The Telegraph earlier, M.K. Jalan, the chairman of Keventer Agro, had said they were looking for land on their own.
“It seems that the state government has given up hope on Keventer’s food park. The Centre, too, calls the project a laughable affair. It is in no mood to give a deadline extension. Keventer had stated that the bhoomi pujan of the Banka land would be done in Dussehra,” an industrialist said.
He added: “On the other hand, Keventer Agro says they are looking for land in Bihar. Similarly, the state is talking about a new park. Just like Keventer, the state government, too, is looking for alternatives. The state is thinking if Keventer’s food park never sees light of the day, its place will be filled up by the JVL Group. Everyone is looking for excuses without stating anything concrete.”