Mumbai: Yogi Adityanath, chief minister of the country’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, interacted with the business and Bollywood communities Wednesday, in a bid to attract investment to his state.
Adityanath met a host of corporate leaders from India Inc. in Mumbai, including Tata Sons chairman N. Chandrasekaran, engineering major L&T’s MD & CEO S.N. Subrahmanyan, private equity firm KKR’s Sanjay Nayar and Bharat Forge’s Baba Kalyani.
Among Bollywood personalities, Yogi met actor Akshay Kumar, as well as filmmakers Boney Kapoor, Anand Pandit, Manmohan Shetty and Subhash Ghai. The CM also allayed concerns raised by Maharashtra leaders about a new film city coming up in the NCR region, which includes parts of UP.
Ease of doing business in UP
According to a statement issued by the UP government, the business community leaders who met Yogi acknowledged the ‘Herculean’ effort that the state has undertaken to jump up to the second spot on ‘ease of doing business’ parameters.
“They also congratulated the CM for making the state the most preferred investment destination,” the statement said.
The UP government claimed the zero tolerance policy of the state government towards crime has largely transformed the law & order situation. It also it has implemented a record 186 reforms, spread across multiple areas such as labour regulations, inspection regulations, land allotment, property registration, environment clearances, which have contributed to the ease of doing business.
The state also boasted of ‘world class’ infrastructure with many expressways in the works, such as the 341-km Poorvanchal Expressway connecting Lucknow to Ghazipur, the 290-km Bundelkhand Expressway connecting Chitrakoot to the Agra-Lucknow Expressway, and a 600-km Ganga Expressway touted as Asia’s longest. UP is also coming up with an international airport at Jewar in Greater Noida, near Delhi.
Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, seven projects worth around Rs 8,500 crore have commenced commercial operations, while 19 projects worth Rs 6,400 crore — including major investments from Reliance Jio, the Adani Group, Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys and PepsiCo — were said have entered the active implementation stage.
The state government is also planning a defence industrial corridor over 5,000 hectares of land, of which 3,796 hectares have been identified. About 1,321.92 hectares have already been acquired, including 1,122 hectares in Jhansi and Chitrakoot alone.
Lucknow municipal bonds on BSE
Earlier in the day, CM Yogi was at the Bombay Stock Exchange for the listing of the Lucknow Municipal Corporation’s bonds. The municipal corporation raised Rs 200 crore through municipal bonds on a private placement basis last month. The coupon rate of the taxable bond was fixed at 8.5 per cent per annum.
The proceeds from the bonds will be used for infrastructure projects in Lucknow. The merchant bankers to the bond issue were A.K. Capital Services Ltd and HDFC Bank Ltd.
Terming the listing a historic moment, Yogi Adityanath said other cities, including Ghaziabad, Agra, Kanpur, Prayagraj and Varanasi, will be using this route for raising resources.
“It is a matter of pride for UP that the Lucknow Municipal Corporation has raised Rs 200 crore through its bond issue which got listed on BSE today,” he said.
“The trust of the investors which UP has earned during the last three and a half years will augment our effort to improve infrastructure in urban areas. It shows the improvement in the industrial climate of the state and the trust the investors have reposed in the state machinery,” Yogi added.
‘Our film city isn’t snatching Mumbai’s business’
CM Yogi also allayed concerns raised by Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray and his Shiv Sena colleague Sanjay Raut about taking away the movie business from Mumbai and Maharashtra with a film city adjacent to Delhi.
“We are creating something new. Why are you getting concerned? We are giving new world-class infrastructure to all. Hence, everybody will have to grow up, widen their thinking and better facilities will have to be given. One who is able to do that will get the people,” he said.