Addressing a press conference, Aaditya Thackeray referred to a letter dated September 5, 2022
Aaditya Thackeray. File Pic
Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Aaditya Thackeray on Tuesday claimed Maharashtra had written to Vedanta chairman Anil Agarwal in September this year for signing an MoU, days before the firm disclosed Gujarat is its pick for the Foxconn-Vedanta semiconductor plant.
Addressing a press conference, Aaditya Thackeray referred to a letter dated September 5, 2022, written to Agarwal by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation's (MIDC) chief executive officer P Anbalagan, inviting Vedanta, Foxconn and Avanstrate to indicate a convenient time and date for signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
The MIDC is the premier industrial infrastructure development agency under the Maharashtra government.
Thackeray alleged the Eknath Shinde-BJP government is lying and reiterated his challenge for an open debate with the chief minister on projects such as Vedanta-Foxconn picking other states over Maharashtra.
The document shared by Thackeray states that subsequent to the letter shared by Shinde on July 26 and an in-person meeting with Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on July 29, an offer was extended under consideration of Vedanta's Fab City.
"This means when a stage comes for signing an MoU, it is implied that all talks have been finalised and the next step is to sign the MoU and then take the Cabinet's approval. This government keeps lying, Thackeray said.
A lie is being spread that Vedanta-Foxconn chose Gujarat to set up its Rs 1.54 lakh crore semiconductor plant because of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government's failure.
Rejecting Thackeray's allegations, state Industries Minister Uday Samant said the MoU was never signed.
The state government, the chief minister and the deputy chief minister had requested Agarwal to sign an MoU, but he tweeted a decision about Gujarat had already been taken, the minister claimed.
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"To sign the MoU, a high-power committee meeting should have taken place. It happened on July 15 after directions from the chief minister. For eight months, the high-power committee meeting did not take place," Samant said.
On September 14, Agarwal tweeted, "We decided Gujarat few months ago, as they met our expectations. But in July meeting with Maharashtra leadership, they made a huge effort to outbid other states with a competitive offer. We have to start in one place & based on professional & independent advice we chose Gujarat".
Thackeray and the opposition parties have been targeting CM Shinde after the state lost the ambitious project.
"If this project was not going to come up in Maharashtra, then why was this letter sent for MoU signing?" Thackeray asked.
"So who is lying? Is the deputy chief minister or the industries minister lying? The unconstitutional chief minister does not speak, as if he does not know anything," he said.
The Worli MLA dared Shinde to debate with him how the Vedanta Foxconn project, Bulk Drugs Park, and Renewable Energy Equipment Park went out of our state.
He also accused the Shinde-Fadnavis government of taking credit for the work done by the previous MVA government under Uddhav Thackeray, and claimed when a project does not work out, the blame is then passed on to the MVA.
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