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Procedural Lapse, Legal Dispute Behind Cancellation of Land Deal With Lulu Group: Andhra Govt

YSRCP minister Mekapati Gowtham Reddy

YSRCP minister Mekapati Gowtham Reddy

Recently, the YSRCP government cancelled the allotment of 13.84 acres of land to the United Arab Emirates-based conglomerate in Visakhapatnam City, which was approved by the previous government.

Syed Ahmed
  • News18
  • Last Updated: November 21, 2019, 8:08 PM IST
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Amaravathi: Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday clarified that they are not against investment by Dubai-based Lulu group, or for that matter any company, in the state but against the procedural flaws.

Recently, the state government cancelled the allotment of 13.84 acres of land to the United Arab Emirates-based conglomerate in Visakhapatnam City, which was approved by the Chandrababu Naidu government for construction of an international convention centre and shopping mall.

State Industrial Minister Mekapati Gowtham Reddy reacted to the reports of Rs 70,000 crore worth Adani’s mega data hub and Rs 15,000 crore electronic manufacturing project being shifted out of Andhra Pradesh saying, “The land allotted to Lulu group by the previous TDP government is disputed. While the rental value of the land is almost Rs 50 crores per month, it was given at a throw away price of Rs 7.02 crores per month, causing a huge loss to the state exchequer. Further, the allotment was done in single bidding, and the Lulu group was directly allocated the land.”

Reddy also responded to recent reports of other groups planning to shift out their proposed projects in the state due to non-cooperation from the government. The minister said, “The state government has no intention to cancel all agreements with industrialists just because they were signed during the TDP regime. The then Chandrababu Naidu government signed agreements to merely show off, and all its allocations disputed. When such agreements are cancelled, it is he who is to be blamed. We are not against other groups also. In fact, the present government has expressed its readiness to provide alternative land to Reliance also.”

He further said that the Andhra Pradesh Industrial and Infrastructure Corporation has the capability and experience required to construct world-class convention centres like HITEX in Hyderabad.

Recently, the Jagan government decided to cancel the previous government’s allocation of 13 acres land to Lulu group in Visakhapatnam. The government took the decision on October 30 in a state cabinet meeting.

Following this, the Lulu group released a press note announcing that it will never invest in Andhra Pradesh in future. When asked about it, Reddy counter questioned as to why the company could not start its work in the past one year when it was allotted land. He claimed that there are legal disputes over the allotted land and there is no environmental clearance for it. Due to such problems the project could not be initiated. It is not the fault of the YSRCP government, which is being blamed as if it is hampering the industrial growth of the state.

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