The Public Accounts Committee has directed the Andhra Pradesh Government to resume lands which have not been utilised by the industries for the purpose they were allotted for.

The committee found irregularities in land acquisition for setting up industries in the State during the Congress Government (2006-11), including for major projects of Lepakshi Knowledge Hub and Hinduja power project. The meeting chaired by Mr Revuri Prakash Reddy on Friday expressed shock about the manner in which land allotted to industries were mortgaged to secure loans without actually using them for setting up the projects.

The committee directed the revenue and industries department to submit a comprehensive report on the irregularities immediately and wanted to know about follow up action. According to their findings, the promoters of Lepakshi Knowledge Hub in Anantapur district spread over 8,840 acres was mortgaged to secure a loan of Rs 1,000 crore from public sector banks.

They also faulted the Government stand in the 1040 mw Hinduja thermal power project planned in Visakhapatnam district, with regard to the agreement with the State Government for the supply of 25 per cent power at Rs 3.87, while allowing them to sell the rest to others. The State had allotted 1,130 acres for the project.

The committee decided to visit Visakhapatnam on July 24 and 25 to inspect the land allotted to Hinduja project.

Later briefing newspersons, members of the committee alleged irregularities had taken place in allotment of about 50,285 acres to various industries and companies. They felt that the Government forced the revenue department to acquire land and farmers were yet to get compensation.

>vrishi@thehindu.co.in

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