Congress demands assembly probe in Vibrant Gujarat irregularities

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

GANDHINAGAR - The Congress party in Gujarat Tuesday demanded setting up of a joint legislative committee to probe irregularities in the Vibrant Gujarat investor summit. The government, however, termed it the party’s attempt to avoid the demand for a joint parliamentary committee probe in a series of national scams.

In a statement issued here, Leader of Opposition in the assembly Shaktisinh Gohil demanded that a status report of all MOUs signed in the last summit should be made public before Vibrant Gujarat 2011 is held later this month.

Gohil alleged that while domestic small and medium businesses are facing a host of problems, a selected coterie of big industrialists are being blatantly favoured in the name of Vibrant Gujarat.

He alleged that in the last three years, favoured industrialists have been given 111,572,319.57 square metres of land at throwaway prices at a time when there is steep rise in the number of educated unemployed, amounting to eight lakh.

Gohil asserted that the Congress was all for the development of Gujarat. But, as a responsible political party, it cannot be a mute spectator to the very well organized activities of giving away valuable property and resources of Gujarat to select few in the misleading guise of development of Gujarat.

Gohil said that during the 2009 Vibrant Gujarat summit, Rs.12.25 lakh crore worth of MOUs were signed but only Rs.62,522.27 crore worth of investment actually came in - just 5.10 percent of the MOUs.

Quoting examples, he said the Hindustan Construction Company had signed a Rs.40,000 crore MOU for a water city near Dholera but has not even cared to visit the site. Similarly, Universal Success Enterprise signed a memorandum of Rs.1 lakh crore for setting up township, a power plant of 1,000 MW and a port. But nothing is known about its progress.

Reacting to the demand, Gujarat ministers Jai Narayan Vyas and Saurabh Dalal said no amount of spreading baseless allegations against the Narendra Modi government could save the Congress-led central government from the JPC. “In mud slinging against the Gujarat government, the Congress leadership in Gujarat is not only doing harm to the state but has lost its credibility too,” they said.

The ministers said that the summit has over the years drawn the world’s attention to vibrant Gujarat and Gujaratis, with leaders of government and private firms from as many as 47 countries converged on one platform during VGGIS-2007.

The ministers said Gujarat’s development model is now increasingly being adopted by other state governments. “The Narendra Modi government has earned the trust and confidence of 5.5-crore Gujaratis as the biggest asset, which no amount of baseless allegations or canards by the opposition parties could shake,” they said.

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