By Rohit Sharma
Tata Sons are planning to expand its hotel business in Punjab by adding 10-15 projects worth Rs 550 crores. The chairman Natarajan Chandrasekaran informed Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh this at a meeting on Tuesday.
The chairman informed the CM that, “The company has identified 10-15 projects for expanding its business in the state… the preliminary cost of the project is estimated at Rs 550 crores, with a maintenance period of 10 years”
The Chief Minister, during the meeting, asked Tata Sons to come out with a Detailed Project Report (DPR) for its proposed project on the rejuvenation of Chhoti Nadi and Badi Nadi River Bodies in Patiala. He handed over to the company chairman a formal letter of the mandate for the same.
The company chairman agreed to explore the CM’s suggestion of setting up an auto plant in the state, and also evinced interest in expanding into food processing, retail and the IT sector, which Singh said offered immense potential for growth in view of the various incentives given by his government and the ease of business promoted by the new industrial policy.
Chandrasekaran said with the retail and service sectors not requiring much gestation period, these were an attractive proposition for expansion in the state, an official spokesperson said after the meeting. The Chief Minister pointed out that Punjab not only had surplus power to support industry but also boasted of no labour problems of any kind.
The possibility of starting Air Asia operations from Amritsar was also discussed, with Chandrasekaran promising to look at connecting Amritsar through domestic flights of the company’s aviation wing.
Tata Sons Ltd. had earlier shown keen interest in the efforts of the Government of Punjab in dealing with the pollution and destruction of its water bodies, and had made a representation for the “Rejuvenation of the Chhoti Nadi and Badi Nadi River Bodies in Patiala” to the Patiala Urban Planning and Development Authority (PDA).
The representation was taken to the Punjab Infrastructure Development Board (PIDB) for further evaluation under the PIDB Unsolicited Proposal Bye Laws 2008 and, after preliminary examination, a decision was taken to issue the mandate to Tata Projects Limited for bringing a detailed project report at their expense for further scrutiny and international bidding as per the Swiss Challenge method.
In this project, rubber dams are also proposed to be constructed at strategic locations to create a separate fresh water body which will ensure better flood management. The Riverfront is proposed to be developed with theme parks, walking avenues, sitting/functional spaces along the river, tree plantation landscape on both the banks of the water bodies.