High court rejects PIL against Gujarat govt's sops for Tata Nano plant

PTI Posted online: Thursday, Apr 24, 2014 at 0000 hrs
Ahmedabad : Refusing to interfere with the industrial policy, the Gujarat High Court today rejected a public interest litigation challenging the 'soft loan' given to Tatas for the Nano plant in Sanand in the district, as well as the land allocation.

"State's industrial policy has not been found inappropriate in connection with the land allocation for the establishment of Tata's Nano car plant, in which this court shall not intervene," the division bench of Chief Justice Bhaskar Bhattacharya and Justice J B Pardiwala said today.

The tax-benefits given to the plant were not illegal, the HC held.

The Nano plant was set up on 725 acres of land in Sanand in 2008 after the Tatas pulled out of Singur in West Bengal.

Ahmedabad resident Himanshu Patel had challenged the state's decision to give a loan of Rs 9,600 crore to the company at 0.01 per cent interest rate with exemption of value added taxes (VAT). Land allocation too had been questioned.

The state told the HC that these sops were meant to give a boost to industrialisation. "Other states like Orissa, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Haryana and Maharashtra have amended their policies for industrial development... Gujarat government has not given any special benefits to Tatas," government pleader Prakash Jani had argued.