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Cash-strapped GIDC drags its feet on new industrial estates

Panaji: The cash-strapped Goa Industrial Development Corporation is seriously finding it  difficult  to set up  the proposed industrial estates.

The corporation has delayed the completion of work for new  industrial estates.  It  has been going slow on plans to acquire land for the new estates.

A top official revealed on Wednesday that only basic work in the long-awaited industrial estates of Panchawadi and Latambarcem has started, and that both the estates will take more time to come into being.

The estates have to be provided with roads, water supply and electricity connections, for which work orders have to be awarded.

“We are not seeking the lease fee from plot owners at Panchawadi at the moment as commissioning of the estate has been  pushed further,”  the GIDC official explained, disclosing that the cash-strapped  corporation is finding  it difficult to complete the pending infrastructure work.

In September 2016, the GIDC allotted 32 plots at  Panchawadi at Rs 1,375 per sq. mtr.  Furthermore in 2017, 98 plots were created in the Latambarcem estate.

Tenders were called for laying  roads and setting up other infrastructure in  both the estates, which  had been scheduled for December 2018 commissioning. 

A manufacturer, who  has been allotted 1,000 sq. mtr of land at the Panchawadi industrial estate, rued that the  delay in setting up the estate has  affected the financial viability of his project.

“Looking at the poor infrastructure in Panchawadi village most of us who were allotted plots now feel that we were overcharged,” he said, adding that the estate has been in the making for more than four years.

Another manufacturer, who has been allotted a plot, said the snail’s pace of work at Panchawadi is alarming.

“It is a letdown from a government agency which is responsible for industrial growth, and is supposed to provide support to local industry for manufacturing.”

The Panchawadi plot owners have now been told that the estate will come into existence  by the end  of 2020.

According to industry sources, it is doubtful whether the GIDC has acquired land at Latambarcem, which is why the estate has  been in the making indefinitely. 

In July this year, the government announced setting up of three more industrial estates – Melaulim (13.8 lakh sq. mtr) in Sattari; Sirsaim  (8.7 lakh sq. mtr) in Bardez, and Poinguinim  (3.9 lakh sq. mtr) in Canacona taluka.

However, the process for acquiring the land is yet to begin.

And there is also no word on the Quitol industrial estate that had been announced about three years back; the proposed estate remains on paper.

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