Mehul Choksi-run Gitanjali Group suffers another blow: Odisha government scraps gems and jewellery park

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Bhubaneswar | April 27, 2018 4:14 PM

The Odisha government has scrapped the Rs 636-crore gems, jewellery, lifestyle and luxury goods park which was to be set up by Gitanjali Infratech Ltd, an official said today.

Mehul Choksi, Gitanjali Group, Odisha government, PNB scam case, Nirav Modi fraud case, Gitanjali Gems, IDCODiamond merchants Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi have been accused of perpetrating the country’s biggest banking sector scam of around Rs 13,000 crore at Punjab National Bank. (IE)

The Odisha government has scrapped the Rs 636-crore gems, jewellery, lifestyle and luxury goods park which was to be set up by Gitanjali Infratech Ltd, an official said today. The development comes in the wake of the multi-crore PNB scam and there is no one from the company, owned by Mehul Choksi-run Gitanjali Group, with whom the state government can interact, he said. Diamond merchants Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi have been accused of perpetrating the country’s biggest banking sector scam of around Rs 13,000 crore at Punjab National Bank.

The state government in November last year accorded final approval to the detailed project reports of Gitanjali Infratech Ltd for setting up the park at Ramdaspur in Cuttack district, he said. A piece of land which had earlier been allotted to the Gitanjali Gems, for setting up a jewellery manufacturing unit also stands cancelled, he said. “The company seems to be in trouble and there is no one with whom we can speak to. Under the circumstances, the project cannot take off. Therefore, the project is now shelved,” Principal Secretary (Industries), Sanjeev Chopra, told PTI.

The gems, jewellery, lifestyle and luxury goods park had been proposed to be developed over 100 acres of land with an investment of Rs 636 crore. Regarding land for the project, Chopra said Gitanjali group had earlier been allotted 30 acres of land at Ramdaspur near Cuttack for a manufacturing unit to be set up in the name of Gitanjali Gems.

Subsequently, the company applied for a private industrial park on an additional 70 acres land. However, land for the proposed private industrial park was yet to be allotted, he said. When the private industrial park was accorded approval, the group proposed to set up the entire project in the name of Gitanjali Infratech Ltd. It sought change of the allotment of 30 acres of land in the name of Gitanjali Infratech, said an official.

After getting the application for transfer of the land in the name of Gitanjali Infratech, the Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO) had cancelled the allotment already made to Gitanjali Gems, he said. However, the trouble (scam) surfaced before the land could be allotted to Gitanjali Infratech and as of now the land allotment stands cancelled, Chopra said.

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