Tata Steel to spend Rs.2,000 crore on environment in Chhattisgarh


Raipur : India’s largest private sector steel maker, Tata Steel, will invest Rs.2,000 crore on environment conservation at its Rs.19,500-crore plant coming up in Chhattisgarh’s militancy-hit Bastar district.

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“Tata Steel officials made a presentation at a public hearing on Monday for environmental clearance and committed to invest Rs.2,000 crore on environment conservation,” Bastar district collector M.S. Paraste, who presided over the meeting, told IANS.

Describing the hearing as “quite successful”, Paraste said 2,044 hectares of land would be handed over to Tata Steel, probably by December.

District authorities have so far acquired about 80 percent of land across 10 villages in Lohandiguda block, some 340 km south of state capital Raipur, for the integrated plant that will produce 5.5 million tonnes of steel annually.

The iron ore-rich Bastar region, spread out over about 40,000 square kilometres, is one of India’s most impoverished pockets and also the nerve centre of Maoist militancy.

Tata Steel said the project would provide huge business opportunities for local entrepreneurs — “around Rs.400-500 crore while the business opportunity for other ancillary industries would be about Rs.2,500 crore”.

In its presentation paper, the company said it would take special measures to abate pollution, solid waste, water pollution and noise.

“The plant is going to implement state-of-the-art pollution control equipment like electrostatic precipitators, bag filters, dust suppression systems such as water sprinklers, dry fog system etc.”

As per the presentation, “estimated annual earnings from taxes and levies would be about Rs.2,400 crore for the government from the Tata Steel Chhattisgarh unit, while the infrastructure development would to the tune of Rs.1,000 crore per annum”.