Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Mar 18:
In a huge blow to Odisha government, South Korean major Posco confirmed cancellation of steel project in Paradip.
Posco authorities in a letter to Odisha government asked to return the given land acquired for setting up of a 12-million tonne steel plant in Paradip, informed Industry Minister Debi Prasad Mishra here today.
“Posco was provided land after acquisition and was asked to clear dues of Rs 82 crore for 2700 acre land. However, it asked the government to take back the land provided for the steel plant as the company has not started the construction work as per the lease condition”, Mishra said.
The acquired land provided to Posco will now remain under IDCO land bank, he said.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has approved the decision to cancel the deal, he added.
Last year the minister had informed the House that Posco temporarily halted its project in Odisha.
Even Posco had told the National Green Tribunal (NGT) that its proposal for setting up the mega steel plant project in Paradip cannot proceed further due to legal hurdles.
The proposed project had faced opposition from the locals and several political parties after the company inked an MoU with Odisha government in June 2005 to set up the plant.