The Telegraph
Friday , January 31 , 2014
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Industry boost in state poll run-up

Patna, Jan. 30: Four big industries would set shop in the state over the next two years. Of them, Hero Cycles and Carlsberg would start operations this year.

In 2015, when the Nitish government faces the Assembly elections, two more biggies would start operations.

Sanjay Singh, the vice-president (corporate planning) of Hero Cycles, said the group plant in Bihta, around 37km from Patna, would start manufacturing from May this year.

“The bhoomi pujan at the Bihta plant was held on June 20 last year. At present, work to complete the plant is on at full pace. By May this year, manufacturing will start. The company is interested in hiring local qualified people. An ancillary unit would also come up near the plant,” he told The Telegraph.

The Rs 40-crore plant would have the capacity to manufacture one million bicycles per day.

Beer is expected to flow freely too from this year.

Senior officials of Carlsberg India said their brewery in Bikram on the outskirts of Patna, for which bhoomi pujan was held in October, 2012, would start in the first quarter of this year.

According to the SIPB report, the Rs 140-crore project, set up on 25 acres, would have a capacity to produce 0.5 million hectolitres per year.

Two big projects would take shape in 2015, with one being a bicycle company again.

“The construction of our plant has started in Hajipur at almost Rs 20 crore. We should be ready for commercial production by the second half of next year,” B.S. Dhiman, the executive president of Avon Cycles, told The Telegraph over phone.

The construction of the UB Group brewery, which remains tangled in land issues, has finally started, said officials of the company. “Our Rs 200-crore project at Naubatpur on the outskirts of Patna is lagging two years behind schedule. Some problems remain. We are in touch with the district administration. If everything goes in fine, we should be ready by late-2015,” said an official of the UB Group.

Industrialists consider these projects as a face-saver for the Nitish government.

“With Nitish acknowledging the fact the lack of big-ticket investments in the state late last year, these four projects would definitely be a provide a boost to the 2015 elections. The state government, after its split with the BJP and infighting, is not quite faring well. Apart from the special status cry which Nitish has been making all the time, he can boast about power and few of these big projects,” said an industrialist.

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