Union Minister’s statement on Steel Plant, A Slap On Rumours

Privatization of the iconic Vizag steel plant has long been a serious bone of contention between the centre and the government of Andhra Pradesh. While the management and the employees of VSP have been strongly opposing the move since the last three years, the central government appeared firm on its stance to go ahead with the plan of disinvestment.

As there is a change of guard in the state with the NDA alliance coming to power and Chandrababu Naidu back as Chief Minister, there is a big hope that the BJP government at the centre, which is also a coalition partner of the state, will backtrack on its decision to privatize the steel plant.

Meanwhile, the recent speculation in a leading news daily the current government took a u-turn on the steel plant created a huge furore in Vizag as TDP supporters raged with anger and ransacked the office for peddling fake news without any official announcement. Many have condemned the attack because it is unfair to take law into the hands even if the news might be wrong.

The YSRCP took advantage of the situation and started criticising the ruling government for stifling the media for publishing real facts. Its supporters lashed out at Naidu and Pawan Kalyan for failing to put pressure on Modi’s government to stop privatization of VSP.

Amid all this confusion, Union Minister for Steel and Heavy Industries HD Kumara Swamy visited the steel plant in Vishakapatnam on Wednesday and held discussions with all stakeholders and the management of VSP for two days.

He categorically condemned the rumours about privatization of steel plant. When the media personnel asked his response about the employees protest to withdraw privatization plans, the Minister strongly reacted ” Who told we are going to privatize, why am I here, there is no question of privatization of Steel Plant “.

Kumara Swamy further asserted that they are looking for revival of the steel plant and added that he needs the permission of the Prime Minister to announce any decision on behalf of the government with regard to the steel plant. He added that he will prepare a detailed plan of action for revival of RINL ( Rastriya Ispat Nigam Limited also called as Vizag Steel Plant) and will put it before the Prime Minister very soon.

He concluded saying that there is a possibility of reviving and we are actually working on it. He also gave a message to the employees and the people of Andhra Pradesh that after visiting the plant he came to know that it will be very helpful for the country’s GDP and also many families are dependent on it. He also assured that it will be functional 100% without closure with the support and blessings of the Prime Minister

The assurance from the Cabinet Minister is a sigh of relief for the employees who have been protesting against privatization. Moreover, he statement is a slap on the face of YSRCP supporters who have been blaming the state government even without any formal announcement from the centre over privatization.

Along with Kumara Swamy, MoS Srinivas Varma was also present at this crucial meeting. Vizag MLAs Vishnu Kumar Raju and Palla Srinivas Rao were also present.