Killer coke Coke to set up plant in MP industrial area

Shashikant Trivedi | Bhopal Jan 16, 2016 10:32 PM IST
Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages has said it will invest Rs 750 crore in phases as the Madhya Pradesh government develops its first industrial area in public private partnership on 679 hectares in Babai village of Hoshangabad district, 72 km south of Bhopal.

The area is to be developed, operated and maintained by a private developer. The Audyogik Kendra Vikas Nigam (AKVN), Bhopal, had to call for parties a second time earlier this month because there were no takers the first time around.

The Babai-Mohasa industrial area has been carved out of a government-owned agriculture farm, to which the previous Congress government also tried to attract investment.

The farm came into existence in the 1970s to teach farmers advanced techniques. Spread across 3,251 acres, the farm incurred heavy losses, except in the initial years. In 2012, the Madhya Pradesh Cabinet decided to hand over 1,600 acres of the farm to the department of industry.

“We have invited private partners for the second time to develop the area. The area will be developed, operated and maintained by the private player for a period of 15 years. There will be no hazardous industry and there will be a zero-discharge policy. No company will be allowed to discharge effluents as the area is in the vicinity of the Narmada river,” J N Vyas, managing director of AKVN, Bhopal, told Business Standard.

“Coca-Cola [Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages] has been issued a letter of intent for allotment of 44 hectares (110 acres). The company will be allocated land separately,” he added.

“Recently, we have been issued a letter of intent allotting a land parcel of 110 acres. We will invest Rs 750 crore in a phased manner. In all, we have plans to set up six bottling lines,” the company said.