THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief minister on Tuesday said the government was successful in making the state investor-friendly in the past 1,000 days.
On the eve of the government’s 1,000th day celebrations, which will be inaugurated in Kozhikode on Wednesday, the chief minister said the government had been able to turnaround the impression that Kerala was a state where none of the announced projects could be materialized.
He cited examples of Gail pipeline laying, national highway widening, Kovalam-Bekal waterway and coastal and hill highways that are progressing or are nearing completion.
Vijayan said his government had changed the impression that the state was unfriendly towards investors. “The government amended seven acts and 10 rules to give clearance to those who are willing to invest in the state, and if the necessary clearance is not received in 30 days, it would be deemed that the clearance has been granted,” he said. However, he said the frequent hartals were a matter of concern, adding that government would soon convene a meeting of all the political parties to bring about a consensus in this regard.
He said the government’s motto was to retain and rejuvenate the public-sector undertakings and the efforts had shown results. The PSUs in the state that were making a loss of Rs 131.6 crore when the government took over, now stands at a profit of Rs 160 crore. He said the act to protect private properties of citizens from any kind of destructions through attacks was also a major feat of the government.
However, opposition leader Ramesh rebuffed chief minister’s claim as a big joke. “If his claims are true, he should clarify on who all are ready to invest in the state. Changing rules and procedures is not the way to make the state investment-friendly. Investors will come to the state only if they feel that the state is investment-friendly”, Chennithala said.
Chennithala said that instead of citing what the government did in the past 1,000 years, the chief minister was giving a wish list of possibilities. He said the Vijayan was only copying the words of finance minister T M Thomas Isaac.
Chennithala challenged the claims of the chief minister about the projects being rolled out by Kerala infrastructure investment fund board (KIIFB). “While raising claims that KIIFB has given administrative sanction to projects worth Rs 41,000 crore, the CM failed to mention how the board would fund the projects as it has only Rs 7,000 crore with it,” the opposition leader said.